James Buchanan's Rachel Martin has seen too much of Trinity's Katherine Long this season.
The Rocket senior had already tangled with Long three times this fall on the tennis court - twice in dual meets and once in the Mid Penn Conference Class 2A No. 1 singles final. Each time the Shamrock came through with a victory.
Unfortunately for Martin, when the pairings for the District 3 Singles Championships were announced, her first-round opponent was none other than Long.
Friday morning, Long eliminated Martin with a 6-2, 6-1 victory. Long, the No. 1 seed, also won in the quarterfinals and will play in the semifinals on Saturday.
Shalom Christian 3, McConnellsburg 2: For the first time this season, McConnellsburg's girls volleyball team suffered a loss, and it came at the hands of Shalom Christian in a highly-contested five-set match.
The teams went back and forth in non-league action with Shalom (14-3) taking an early lead by dominating the first set, 25-14. But McConnellsburg (13-1) turned right back around and won the next two sets, 25-18 and 25-20. The Flames pushed it to a decisive fifth set with a 25-23 win, and they just edged out the Spartans, 18-16, for the win.
"We expected a battle tonight, and that's what we got," McConnellsburg coach Heidi Johnston said. :We sure want a few of those points back at the end of games 4 and 5, but we needed tested and now to learn from those pressure situations moving forward. Both teams fought hard tonight."
Both setters had their work cut out for them tonight, distributing the ball to their well-rounded offenses. Kylie Eby finished with 39 assists for Shalom, while McConnellsburg's Lindsey Randler recorded 33.
Haley Bricker had a staggering 21 kills to lead Shalom's offense; she also had six digs, four aces and seven blocks. Lauren Stains added 10 kills and six blocks, and Kodi Ebersole racked up 11 digs.
For McConnellsburg, Carly Swope knocked down 16 kills, and Bridgette Ritchey added 11. Ritchey, Swope, Randler and Ary Lupey all recorded 11 digs.
Fannett-Metal 6, Shalom Christian 2: The Tigers are getting hot as the season progresses, and their third straight victory came over a quality side in Shalom.
Dylan Seibert and Mikell McGee opened the scoring for Fannett-Metal (8-6), but the Flames' Jonah Stains made it 2-1 before halftime. The teams traded goals to open the second half, Brandon Winehardner for F-M and Tucker King for Shalom on a penalty kick. But the Tigers closed it out with two goals by Kyler Goshorn and one more by McGee. Seibert and McGee also had assists.
F-M led in shots (11-4) and keeper Colby Adams made two saves.
Flames coach Chris Lehman said, "I thought we did well overall, especially since we played the last 10 minutes with only 10 men. I was proud of our heart and drive, and I'm looking forward to our playoffs next week."
No. 1 seed Shalom (14-3) is expected to host Heritage in a first-round MDCC playoff game Tuesday.
St. John's Catholic Prep 4, Mercersburg 1: The Blue Storm scored a goal in the first half, with Grace Lewis scoring and Maddie Surmacz getting the assist. Mercersburg is 1-8 (0-2 IPSL).