LISA CAPITELLI ¦ Assistant Editor
Stephen Decatur senior Alexis Martinek (11) handles a fast moving hit during Tuesday’s game against James M. Bennett in Berlin. The defensive specialist dug 11 Clippers’ hits in the loss.OCEAN CITY TODAY/LISA CAPITELLI(Oct. 12, 2012) Volleyball matches between the Stephen Decatur Seahawks and the James M. Bennett Clippers are always heated battles. Tuesday’s competition was no different.
“There’s always nerves and excitement when we play Bennett,” said Decatur Coach Sarah Zimmer. “It is a big rivalry.”
Bennett won the first game 25-16 on Decatur’s home court.
Zimmer said her team started off strong, but midway into the first game, the Seahawks weren’t covering the court to defend against the Clippers’ spikes and tips.
The second game was a back-and-forth battle. The visiting team led 21-19, but Decatur fought back to tie the score 23-all. The Seahawks then scored two points to win 25-23.
“Our coverage was a little better,” Zimmer said. “We adjusted to their hitting and we started to make smarter plays.”
Things started to fall apart for Decatur in the third game, Zimmer said, as the girls stopped communicating with one another and they made several errors. Bennett outscored Decatur in Game 3, 25-12.
Points were traded in the fourth game. Tied at 16-all, Decatur went on a five-point run to pull ahead 21-16.
The home team led 22-20 and scored three to win the game 25-20.
“We made some good plays, we pushed thought that game and worked hard to win,” Zimmer said.
The Seahawks had momentum going into the fifth and final game. The girls were pumped up, Zimmer said, but the Clippers controlled the game and came out on top, 15-7 to win the match.
“They were excited after winning [the fourth game], but they might have been too wound up and not as relaxed as I think they could have been,” she said.
Decatur senior defensive specialist Alexis Martinek dug 11 Clippers’ hits. Casey Ortiz, a senior, had nine kills and senior setter Ashley Trice recorded 16 assists.
“Overall, I was pleased with them not giving up and getting to five games with Bennett,” Zimmer said. “We weren’t making the smartest plays at times, but other times we came up with some great plays.”
Decatur will host the Parkside Rams today, Friday, at 5:30 p.m. When the teams went head to head Sept. 25, Parkside won in four games.
“We didn’t play well in that match. Parkside is very beatable,” Zimmer said. “The girls have to play smart and how I know they can.”