Northeastern, Suburban meet for District 3 championship
Dallastown volleyball players explain how to perform a float serve. Jim Seip, GameTimePA
The District 3 Class 2A boys' volleyball championship will have a decided local flavor to it.
No. 2 Northeastern, which was a 3-1 winner over Cocalico on Wednesday, will face No. 5 York Suburban, a 3-1 winner over Manheim Central, in Friday's final. The match is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. at Dallastown High School.
The two teams met earlier in the season, with Northeastern winning 3-2 on March 28. York Suburban head coach Jamie Evans also pointed out the two teams met in a tournament this year, a one-set match that went Northeastern's way but also went down to the wire.
“We’re excited. It proves that our league is so tough," Evans said. "We faced them a couple times in this situation and we feel like it’s our turn. We want to go in and fight.”
Each team had to scrap in Wednesday's semifinals to advance.
The Bobcats, seeded No. 2 in the district tournament bracket, beat No. 3 Cocalico by scores of 25-22, 22-25, 25-9, 25-17.
Northeastern has been a state powerhouse for some time, evidenced by its four straight District 3 titles and four consecutive state championships. The Bobcats hope to continue building off that success moving forward in the postseason.
The team was somewhat inconsistent on Wednesday, albeit it still resulted in victory. Northeastern couldn't get any sustained momentum in the opening two sets, committing unforced errors and service errors en route to a 1-1 deadlock.
The third set featured flashes of brilliance, however. The Bobcats were crisp, fired home a series of kills and ripped through Cocalico in convincing fashion.
The fourth and final set saw the Bobcats play sluggish at times and also have some issues with the officiating. In the end, they pulled off the victory.
"It's been that way all season. We cannot find that level of consistency day in and day out," said head coach Matt Wilson. "It's literally back and forth."
Wilson was still reminded his team will be playing for a title — yet again — on Friday.
"All that said, we're still alive," Wilson said. "I think we can be a dangerous team."
Nate Wilson had 13 kills for Northeastern, Wyatt Hughes added 12 and Cole Brillhart finished with 11.
Wilson added two aces, James Toomey had four digs and Jacob Cheuvront recorded 46 assists.
As for the Trojans, they dropped the opening set to Manheim Central 25-20. They then ripped off three straight wins — 25-20, 25-21, 25-23 — to take home the victory.
It was an even and intriguing matchup, but the tide began turning following Suburban's Set 3 win and the Trojans had a swagger to their step down the stretch.
Jack Schultz had 19 kills, two blocks and seven digs on his stat line. Nate Bowman added 11 kills, three blocks and 10 digs.
Nick Bowman had 22 digs while Declan Ridings had eight blocks. Noah Chojnacki had 28 assists while Zach Weinstein added 21 assists of his own.
Evans said his team started the season hot and then went into a lull. The past two weeks the Trojans have come on though, Evans said, punctuated by district wins against No. 4 Lancaster Mennonite and now No. 1 Manheim Central.
"I think Friday night is going to come down to who wants it more," Evans said.
“If you like volleyball, you should be at Dallastown at 7:30 on Friday.”