After dispatching the Rockets in three games (25-21, 25-13, 25-16), Suburban finished its campaign as the YAIAA boys' volleyball regular-season champions with a perfect 11-0 record. But it's not simply the matches, the Trojans did not lose a game during the regular season, sweeping all 10 league opponents.
"It was a serious thing to us. I think it's pretty impressive, and we all wanted to keep it," Eshler said after he finished the match with 10 kills, six digs, one block and one assist.
The first game wasn't as smooth as most contests the Trojans have played this season. Celebrating senior night beforehand had its effect, something that Suburban coach Jamie Evans expected.
"We talked about it last night, and I said, 'I know you are big macho men, and it is not going to affect you, but it hits at the moment,'" Evans said. "Plus, you are not preparing for the game, you are worrying about your parents, or getting introduced.
"I was expecting a slow start, and that was kind of what we got."
Spring Grove opened a 14-11 lead after a big block from Seth Brassard and an ace from Dalton Hall, prompting Evans to call a rare timeout and talk to his group.
Ted Hinnenkamp responded with one of his 12 digs on the night, and although the Rockets took the next two points, the Trojans scored five of the next six, tying the game at 17. Tied at 20, two Hinnenkamp kills, surrounded one by Fred Gard (five kills, 11 digs) gave Suburban the lead for good.
Pushing a talented squad such as the Trojans was a positive for Spring Grove (5-6 YAIAA, 7-8 overall) coach Bill Hahn.
"We found ourselves playing very solid volleyball against tough teams this season," he said. "We had some moments of brilliance, but also moments of non-brilliance. Teams that spread the offense side-to-side really exploits our middle. Top to bottom, they are one of the best teams I have seen."
The Rockets trailed 10-4 in the middle game before closing the gap to 17-13, but Suburban ran off the final eight points.
The final game saw Spring Grove close within 13-12, thanks to Aaron Hoff, who finished with 13 kills for the match. However, the Trojans scored 10 straight points, including three aces from Jacob Kauffman (five kills, one block, four digs, four aces).
Deiter finished with 32 assists to go along with five digs, a kill, a block and an ace.
"I think that has been a huge advantage, their maturity of their game," Evans said of his group. "We never panic when we are behind, we just keep playing. I look at that score and we are three points down, and that is nothing to me. They have that confidence and I have that confidence in them."
SUBURBAN 3, SPRING GROVE 0
(25-21, 25-13, 25-16)
Spring Grove stats -- Aaron Hoff (13 kills, 1 dig), Dalton Forbes (6 kills, 1 dig), Derek Forbes (4 kills, 2 digs), Drew Blecher (2 kills, 8 digs, 20 assists), Dalton Hall (11 digs, 1 ace, 2 assists).
York Suburban stats -- Fred Gard (5 kills, 11 digs, 1 assist), Jaryd Eshler (10 kills, 1 block, 6 digs, 1 assist), Jacob Kauffman (5 kills, 1 block, 4 digs, 4 aces), Ted Hinnenkamp (12 kills, 1 block, 5 digs), Brad Hartshorne (3 kills, 1 block), Kody Deiter (1 kill, 1 block, 5 digs, 1 ace, 32 assists), Justin Corsa (6 digs, 1 ace).
JV Score -- Spring Grove def. York Suburban, 25-18, 25-18.