Girls volleyball: Wins by Barrington, Hersey set up MSL title match
Two Mid-Suburban League girls programs with a combined 25 division titles provided an exciting two sets of volleyball on Wednesday night in Barrington.
When it was over, the host Fillies wrapped up their first undefeated conference season in coach Michelle Jakubowski's seven seasons at Barrington with a 25-17, 25-23 decision over Fremd, a 2019 Class 4A state finalist.
The Fillies (12-1, 10-0) will play at Hersey (9-2, 9-1) April 22 for the MSL championship.
"This was worth the wait to have this season," said Fillies' freshman Jena Meitzler, who put down 4 kills. "All the girls are so nice and I love them all. This is a very big win. We feel more confident now going into our next few games (at Stevenson on Thursday, Libertyville on Monday) and the conference championship."
It will be Jakubowski's second MSL title match in four years. Her 2018 team defeated Buffalo Grove for the crown, the Fillies' 12th in program history along with 16 division titles.
"It was nice to be undefeated in the conference," Jakubowski said. "The girls played hard and this was a goal of theirs. Fremd is an awesome team. They're a talented team and obviously down a player (junior standout Rylen Reid has been out the last few matches) and they still played hard. It's going to be some good matchups with them the next few years."
Barrington sophomore Campbell Paris led the Fillies with 8 kills, while classmate Jessica Horwath had 3. Junior Breanna Dunn recorded a pair of kills with 3 blocks. Amelia Sigaev (12 assist) and Felicia Guagliardo (8 assists) set the attack while libero Amanda Cleary had 11 digs and 2 aces.
Fremd (7-2, 7-2) was led on attack by junior Sarah Grump (7 kills), junior Claudia Wala (4) and junior Sarah Graham (2). Rian Baker (55-of-55 setting with 12 assists, 3 digs), Allie Belmonte and Wala each had 3 blocks while Deme Yianis (2 aces) led with 5 digs followed by Izzy Segoviano (4).
A kill by Wala tied the first set at 4-4 but the Fillies proceeded on a 4-0 run and never looked back. Horwath's ace made it 6-4. Paris' block and a kill by senior Christina Copertino made it 8-4.
Wala's kill got Fremd to within 20-17 but the Fillies scored 5 straight points to end it. Sigaev served the final 3 points, getting an ace followed by a kill and block by Meitzler.
Set 2 was tied at every point from 1 to 5 before Barrington got the first 2-point lead at 7-5 on a kill by Paris. Fremd rallied and Belmonte's block put the visitors ahead 15-12. An ace by Baker gave the Vikings their biggest lead at 16-12.
But the MSL West champs responded and surged back ahead at 20-18 on back-to-back aces by Cleary.
With Barrington at match point, a service point by Wala got the Vikings to within 24-23 before Horwath's well-placed tip ended the match.
"I thought we played them extremely well," said Fremd coach Curt Pinley. "I thought we had more energy and were more confident than them. I thought we played a very good match. The score may not indicate a win but with everything else, I'm really proud of our girls.
"I'm looking forward to finishing out the season with them. Everyone stepped up and that's the important thing. For a season like this, to play our best match of the season here, really gives us a little bit of the foothold for the future."
Hersey d. Buffalo Grove:
Victoria Babinski (8 kills, 2 blocks) and Allie Korba (4 aces, 2 kills, 19 assists) led Hersey past BG 25-18, 25-17. The win clinched the MSL East title for the Huskies (9-2, 9-1), their 19th straight under coach Nancy Lill. Alexa Knutson (4 kills, 1 block), Olivia Mellen (2 aces, 8 digs), Ellie Muglia (4 kills, 1 block), Lauren Lubbe (1 kill, 1 block), Taylor Tracz (1 kill, 1 block), Elizabeth Avirmed (2 aces, 4 digs), Lilly Pagan (1 ace) and Maddie Mullin (9 digs) contributed for Hersey.