By Brennan Waldorf
Last Friday, Oct. 18, was the Broadwater Vikings last home game of the season. Seniors Mary Blake Leland, Kerry Ford, Virginia Ross, Caroline Arnold, McKenzie Mabalot, and Alexa Cobb all finished their careers in Exmore with a victory as they were celebrated on Senior Night. The Vikings took on conference foe Gateway Christian Academy, beating them in three straight sets for the second time this year.
The Crusaders are 6-12 on the season and are fundamentally sound as their slow play tested the Vikings’ patience. With the Crusaders strong fundamentals, the Vikings were forced to play without errors to keep them at bay. Strong hits by the Viking squad were surprisingly dug up frequently and expertly by the Crusaders. The Vikings had to be decisive with the ball as the Crusaders spaced the floor leaving no ground left uncovered.
Set one started with multiple blocking errors on the Vikings’ side. The Viking seniors had to tone back for their last game as the Crusaders controlled game flow with their slow playing style. The Vikings took the lead after Virginia Ross got behind the line boosting her team to 5 unanswered points that put them ahead 9-4. The Vikings kept their comfortable lead the entire set, eventually winning 25-19.
The second set started with the Vikings down 3-0 but the mature squad would slow down game play and be more patient. The Vikings took the lead after a Crusaders’ serve fell into the net, setting up Mary Blake Leland to deliver an ace putting the Vikings up 13-11. The Crusaders then stumbled after leading and Broadwater took advantage. Broadwater’s Caroline Arnold secured the win for the Vikings following an outside kill from Emily Nordwall. Arnold delivered an ace, giving her team game point, which was decided after a hitting error by the Crusaders saw them lose 25-15.
The last set was similar to the second as the Vikings initially started behind but once again settled in to the slow play and beat the Crusaders at their own game. With Vikings playing the ball patiently, they were able to find the open space and zone in on the Crusaders. They recorded several kills from the outside and middle and won 25-14 after another Gateway hitting error on the game point.
Emily Nordwall lead the Vikings in kills recording 11. Virginia Ross stuffed the stat sheet with seven kills, four aces, and three blocks.