Lady Braves lose to Lake George in Class D title match
SARATOGA SPRINGS — Playing in the Section II Class C title game for the second-straight year, and third time in the last five seasons, the Fonda-Fultonville girls volleyball team was looking to bring home its first title.
Standing in their way was top-seeded Lake George.
The Warriors put the disappointment of last season’s disqualification from postseason play behind them to take home their first sectional championship since 2008 with a 3-0 win over Fonda-Fultonville on game scores of 25-20, 25-13, 25-22.
Lake George advances to Regional play and will face Section X champion Canton in the semifinal round at 7 p.m. Thursday at Gloversville High School.
“Lake George has been through this before and for them it is just another game,” Fonda-Fultonville coach Ashleigh Griswold said. “For these girls there was a lot of stress and they wanted it right to the very end. I know it is hard to tell them it now but it has been a great season.’
Fonda-Fultonville jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the opening game with Madisyn Dineen and Krystal McSpirit collecting kills.
However, the Warriors got an extended service run from Cassi Wagemann to take an 8-4 advantage and open their lead to 11-4.
The Lady Braves battled back and closed to 18-15 on an ace from Dineen before Lake George coach Brittany Jones called a time out to settle her team down.
Lake George got a side out and pulled out to a 23-19 lead before Marilyn Whitcavitch connected for a kill to put the score at 23-20.
The Lady Braves could not keep the momentum going as the Warriors closed out the game for a 25-20 win.
Fonda-Fultonville built on the momentum it built late in the opening game with a service run from Whitcavitch to take a 4-1 lead.
The Lady Braves held the lead until the Warriors got an extended service run from Mikayla Duffy to build a 9-5 lead.
The lead did not last long as McSpirit put together a service run and with a hit from Whitcavich tie the game at nine apiece.
Again, the Warriors used their service game to take the lead and run the score to 16-11 before Fonda-Fultonville got a side out.
Lake George got the ball back on their side of the net and used a long run from Maddie Burke and kills from Duffy to close out the 25-13 win.
Fonda-Fultonville again fell behind early in the third game, trailing 13-6 before fighting back behind a service run from Dineen and solid net play from Whitcavich and McSpirit to tie the game at 19.
Again the Warriors adjusted their play and pulled away behind a run by Jasmine Burke to close out the match with a 25-22 victory.
“I think they got down on themselves in the first two games but we have been in matches where we have lost the first two games and came back to win,” Coach Griswold said. “They kept going and rallied right to the end.”
Duffy led Lake George (18-2) with 13 kills and eight service points, while Maddie Burke had seven kills and three blocks and Ella Fox added nine kills to go with 23 assists from Alli Zilm.
Whitcavitch finished with eight kills and 19 digs for the Lady Braves, while McSpirit had seven kills and two blocks and Dineen finished with three kills, 16 digs and two aces to go with 16 assists and six digs from Julia Bagnardi.
Fonda-Fultonville finished the season with a 12-3 overall record, which Coach Griswold is hoping to continue building on.
“Hopefully we can keep this train moving forward but I am proud of them for the season they had and just getting here again,” She said. “These girls have a heart for it.”