A slow start doomed Chambersburg's boys volleyball team against Central Dauphin on Tuesday night.
It took four sets, but the Rams came out top against the Trojans in a match that had important implications on the league standings.
The loss puts Chambersburg (5-3, 5-2 MPC) in a three-way tie for first place in the Mid Penn Commonwealth Division, with both Central Dauphin and Cumberland Valley holding the same MPC record.
While the Trojans looked sluggish and unfocused in the first set, Central Dauphin was full of energy out of the gate.
“I think we definitely started out playing very well tonight,” Central Dauphin coach Josh Brenneman said. "Things were running smoothly, but as the night went on I could tell our guys were getting tired. Overall I think the guys did a very good job.”
The Rams downed Chambersburg, 25-17, which seemed to snap the Trojans out of their funk.
Chambersburg flipped things around and returned the favor, evening the match at one set apiece, and even the crowd could tell that the winner of the third set would gain a considerable advantage.
“The effort in sets two, three, and four? I’ll take that,” Chambersburg coach Marta Cummings said. “We’re just coming out way too flat in every match, expecting the other teams to make the mistakes instead of us earning them. But every match we seem to wake up in game two and realize we need to play.”
The third set was high school volleyball at its finest, filled with several diving saves and rallies that kept the crowd on edge. But great team play allowed CD to take the set, 25-21. The Rams used that momentum to hold off a valiant Trojan effort, winning the fourth and final set, 25-23.
“I told the guys, ‘We’ve gotta stick together as a team,’" Brenneman said. "We start making a couple of mistakes and we start getting upset, but we just have to worry about what's going on on our side of the net. We can control our passes and our offense so don’t worry about what’s going on their side of the net, worry about what’s going on on ours.”
Dalton Strite lead the Trojans with eight kills while Riley Washington led the team with 10 blocks; Evan Misal also played well for Chambersburg and finished with seven kills and three blocks.