BURLINGTON – The Nonnewaug girls volleyball team made it to the finals of the Berkshire League tournament last night, but fell to Lewis Mills 2-1 on their home court.
But in the end, Nonnewaug head coach Martin Malaspina had a philosophical question for his team: Did finishing second in the tournament even matter?
To Malaspina’s point, Nonnewaug already knew it is the six-seed in the upcoming CIAC Class M tournament, and will host No. 27 Ellington in the first round Monday.
And though the Chiefs lost in the Berkshire League tournament finals, Nonnewaug and Lewis Mills were declared co-champions based on their regular season league and head-to-head records.
“It sounds sarcastic, but I told them that this tournament was just a great warm-up for states,” Malaspina said. “At the end of the day, it really doesn’t matter much. We still got there because they worked hard from the beginning of the season.”
Lewis Mills 25 11 25, Nonnewaug 19 25 21
Nonnewaug came onto the court more fired up than Lewis Mills, and scored the first point of the first set. But the Chiefs quickly found themselves trailing 10-1 and 15-2.
However, Nonnewaug went on a 9-point run to close within four points, 15-11.
“There was a little bit of a scary time in the first set, but I was happy with the way they played after that,” Malaspina said. “From 15-2 to 25-19 showed a lot of heart.”
Nonnewaug was dominant in the second set, and rolled to a 25-11 win to set up a third and final match.
Lewis Mills jumped out to a 9-6 lead in the third match. Nonnewaug closed the gap to 16-15 before Lewis Mills pulled ahead for good 21-17.
Skylar Delp had 19 assists, 6 aces, and 5 digs. Kelli Haigh had 8 digs, 11 kills, and an assist. Alexis Delia had 6 kills, 3 aces, and 4 digs.
Nonnewaug 25 25, Terryville 16 10
Nonnewaug defeated fourth-seed Terryville 25-16 and 25-10 in its semifinals match.
Delp had 20 assists, 7 aces, and 1 kill, Tori O’Bar had 12 digs, 4 aces, and 1 kill, Alexa Spain had 5 kills and 1 block, and Delia had 10 kills and 1 ace.