Pates hot heading into final week
With the volleyball regular season wrapping up this week, Freedom holds the cards to the EPC playoff picture.
The Patriots (13-2, 12-2) entered this week as the top-seed for the EPC tournament with three matches to go against Bethlehem Catholic, Easton and Liberty this week. With a win over Liberty (11-2, 11-2) already under their belt this season, Thursday’s regular season finale against the Hurricanes could be a huge match for league tournament seedings.
“These last three league matches are very importance to us,” said Freedom head coach Donna Roman. “To tell you the truth, we have not even considered the seeding in approaching this week. Our focus is on the goals we have set as a team and how we want to play against our city rivals. All three teams we face this week have a lot of fire power and we know that they are going to be coming for us.”
With heightened expectations for the Pates now, Roman didn’t always see this type of campaign from her group. The team has won eight straight matches since getting swept by Emmaus on September 16 and Roman feels that loss helped spur this streak of wins.
“Emmaus was certainly a turning point,” she said. “We played well but allowed little mistakes throughout the match, and it’s those little aspects of the game that make all the difference when you are an undersized team. Part of our theme for this season is “Do your job” and the Emmaus loss really drove that point home. Emmaus taught us a lesson, and helped us to realize how important our individual jobs on the court are.”
Liberty and Bethlehem Catholic (11-3, 11-2) will also be in the EPC tournament when things shake out.
The Hurricanes have Allen and Dieruff this week before taking on Freedom, while the Hawks face Freedom, Allen and Easton.
In our first meeting with Beca, we had a nice win in the first set, only to drop the next three without putting up much of a fight. Keeping our consistency and an aggressive offense against Beca is a key. And we already know Liberty is coming for us on our Senior Night as we came for them on theirs.
I actually do not think that the top seed has a lot of meaning. Sure it would be great, but this season has shown that the top billing means nothing, and many teams are so dangerous this season. There is no counting out a 7 or 8th ranked team this season. I am expecting to see a lot of exciting matches in the postseason.
I knew that we had the potential to make some noise this season. Though we are still very young, we have the same starting lineup we used last year so the girls have a lot more experience under their belts this season. We also have a very good team chemistry and that has come a long way in tight matches and in those long rallies.