WOODBURY – The Nonnewaug volleyball team rallied from a 2-1 deficit to defeat previously-undefeated Northwestern 3-2 Tuesday and raised its record to 4-0.
After winning the fourth set, Nonnewaug trailed Northwestern 5-0 in the fifth before head coach Martin Malaspina called a time out.
“I just told them that we had come back from down before, and to stay positive for each other, and constantly keep setting the middles,” Malaspina said. “The middles were fantastic today.”
Indeed, it was a wonderful day for the middle hitters: Senior Alexa Spain had two blocks, assisted on two blocks, and had 14 kills. Senior Alexis Delia added 11 kills, including the game-clincher.
“We just had to calm down and play our game,” Delia said. “We knew that we were going to have to work hard and work together and even though we got down on ourselves sometimes, we used each other to pick us back up.”
Senior outside hitter Kelli Haigh had a team high 17 kills, and senior setter Skylar Delp had 45 set assists.
Malaspina said Nonnewaug has a lot of talent senior-wise, as well as a great sophomore libero in Victoria O’Bar.
Coming into the match, Northwestern had not lost a set in its first three games. It was the second straight match in which Nonnewaug needed to come from behind to win.
“We did the exact same thing against Lewis Mills [on Sept. 15],” Malaspina said. “So I reminded them we’ve been here before and we can get out of it.”
Delia said she was not just impressed with Northwestern’s game, bit its overall sportsmanship. She said Northwestern’s players made honest calls on themselves if the referees couldn’t make a call.
“We all worked so hard to be where we are now,” Delia said. “And I can honestly say on behalf of the whole Nonnewaug team we are not only playing as a team, we are playing as a family, and that’s what makes each game so personal.”