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Archive for Friday, October 13, 2006

Seabury sweeps

Thurman breaks all-time kills record

October 13, 2006

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Between matches on Thursday, senior Molly Thurman had no idea that she was just five kills away from breaking the Seabury all-time kills record.

That was until coach Craig Friedrichsen told her and encouraged her to break it.

Thurman broke the record, notching 20 kills during the two matches, leading Seabury to two victories on her final night playing at home.

"I had no idea that I could do that, and I am just excited that I could do that for my team," Thurman said.

Thurman led the Seahawks to two victories over Elwood, 25-13, 26-24, and Maranatha, 25-14, 25-15, and Seabury never dropped a game.

The Seahawks did it with quick starts, especially in the first match against Maranatha. Sophomore Melissa Burch served to open the match and helped get her team off to an 11-0 start. Burch added three aces during the opening stretch.

"It is gigantic because, in volleyball, there is so much about momentum and attitude," Friedrichsen said of the quick start. "After that we know we are going to get a side out when we need it and get a point when we need it."

Burch and Thurman used their height to rise above the hands of their opponents attempting to block spikes. Maranatha and Elwood were not successful in stopping the kills from Burch and Thurman all evening.

"I told them between the two games that I am thrilled to have them on my team," Friedrichsen said of Burch and Thurman. "They can make terrific plays."

Burch helped the Seahawks convert a perfect 17 of 17 points when she served, and she also added eight kills.

"I told our setters to get the ball to Melissa's shoulder because I wanted her to dent the floor, and she hits the ball hard," Friedrichsen said.

Seabury used exceptional passing to set up Thurman and Burch, and rarely committed mistakes in getting the ball to its tallest players.

"When we are big at the net I think that helps our team, and when we get a kill it gets us excited," Thurman said. "I think we have really improved on passing and I think practice is really paying off."

The two victories were critical for Friedrichsen's team because the Seahawks had struggled recently, including dropping two matches at home on Tuesday.

"We kind of had a stretch that we were playing teams that were a little out of our league," Friedrichsen said. "It was important to come here and play well and make a statement."

Seabury will face a talented group of teams on Saturday at the McLouth Invitational. The tournament will feature 16 teams, and Seabury will play five matches. Friedrichsen said he hoped it would help prepare his team for the regional tournament next week.

"I think that is going to be important to see our kids get 60 or 70 serves each that day, and the hitters might swing 100 times," Friedrichsen said. "It is going to be a good day to really get things going."

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