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Valley Sports Report
CORNING "” Sixth-seeded and defending champion Waverly surprised more than a few people by returning to the Class C finals, but top-seed Windsor put an end to their hopes of a title repeat here Saturday afternoon at Corning-Painted Post High School.

The Lady Black Knights, now 17-2, swept the Lady Wolverines by scores of 25-13, 25-10, and 25-16.

"(Windsor) is ranked second in the State for a reason," said Waverly coach Kesha Sinsabaugh. "Our girls have no reason to hang their heads.

"Windsor is going to do well at States," she added.

Seniors Adrianah Clinton and Chloe Croft, who were both starters on last year's Section IV championship team - Waverly's first-ever Section IV title, were both emotional after the loss, but know the Lady Wolverines did well to reach the finals again.

"It was an amazing feeling to win a Section title," said Clinton. "I was coming back into this gym hoping to have that feeling again, but I'm really proud of this team and how much we've achieved.

"Getting here again was amazing," added Clinton.

"At the beginning of the season, coach (Sinsabaugh) had us write down our goals," said Croft. "One of mine was coming back here again, and I know a lot of people had that same goal.

"It was great getting back here again, but it's kind of surreal, too.

"I really think we're making a name for Waverly volleyball," added Croft. "We made history, and that feels really good."

Waverly opened strong, and trailed just 10-8 in the first set, but seven straight service, including three aces, points by Morgan Bryant, and two more by Nicole Rose gave Windsor a commanding 20-9 lead en route to the 25-13 win.

Bryant opened the second set with five straight points, including three aces, then Rose served up 12 straight points, including five aces, to give Windsor an insurmountable 17-1 advantage on its way to a 25-10 win.

Serve-receive was an issue the entire match for the Lady Wolverines.

"We knew coming in today things would go hay-wire if we didn't serve-receive, especially after Thursday because it wasn't any better against (Windsor) then," said Sinsabaugh.

"We changed it up, but for some reason the girls decided to make up their own minds on what they wanted to do," she noted. "It definitely wasn't what we practiced yesterday, and it was a little frustrating.

"It also didn't help that we were not able to get a pass off on our side of the floor," added Sinsabaugh. "If we were able to get a pass off and make an actual hit, we would have been much better today."

Windsor jumped out to a 6-1 lead in the third set, thanks to four service points from Sofia Peret, and never trailed.

The Lady Black Knights stretched their lead to 18-9, but Croft served up three points to cut the deficit to 18-12. That's as close as Waverly would get as Windsor reeled off six straight points to take a 24-12 lead on its way to a 25-16 win.

"We had a good season," said Sinsabaugh. "We have a competitive IAC South schedule, but it doesn't keep us in line with the STAC programs.

"I've said for years (our league) hurts us," she added. "We tried to play in more STAC tournaments this season, so we'd be better prepared for the postseason, but it's just not enough."

Croft led Waverly with four points, 15 setter assists, two kills, and nine digs, while Clinton had four points, including two aces, and four kills, and junior Maddy Goodwin had three points, four kills, and five digs.

Senior Paige Lewis registered four kills for the Lady Wolverines, while junior Sidney Tomasso had three points, senior Morgan Adams added two blocks, and sophomore Aryan Peters chipped in with four digs.

For Sinsabaugh, who recorded her 100th career win Tuesday, it was her final match after nine years as head coach at Waverly.

"I have mixed emotions, it's bittersweet," she said. "It's hard to be done coaching, but I'm excited to spend more time with my family, and to see what these what these kids can do, and how they continue to grow.

"Watching the kids grow over the last 13 years has been as much fun as the coaching itself," added Sinsabaugh.

Waverly wraps up the season with an 11-7 record.


IN PHOTO 1: Waverly's Paige Lewis bumps as Chloe Croft (6), and Sidney Tomasso look on. ... PHOTOS BY TIM BIRNEY.

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