By Kyle Gotimer
Leesburg (Oct. 28, 2014) – Heritage High School volleyball co-captain Maddy Emerald gave it all she had as she rallied off eight consecutive scoring points in the fifth set against Conference 21 foe Millbrook High School on Oct. 28. However, her effort was not enough – as in their final home volleyball match of the season – the Pride fell to the Pioneers 3-2 (17-25, 25-15, 25-21, 19-25, 15-13).
“I don’t think it has sunk in yet that it’s my very last game here,” Emerald said.
Emerald’s co-captain Claire Lydon agreed with her fellow senior and added that at least “we ended it on a high note.”
Heritage came out strong in the first set to jump out to a 1-0 set lead with a 17-25 win.
Although the Pride showed well in the first set, Millbrook took the second set 25-15 backed by power hitting senior Ashley Humphrey.
Millbrook stayed dominant into the third set with a 25-21 win this time playing the soft game after Heritage sophomore middle Skyla Richardson blocked the Pioneer hitters on consecutive plays to start the set.
“I think that there were moments of us playing really well and moments we needed to play better,” Richardson said. “I knew that I could play better so I stepped it up in the fourth set when we started running slides.”
The slides worked for the Pride as Heritage won the fourth set 19-25 playing against a sleepy Millbrook back line. The Pride fell behind at the beginning of the set, but Richardson pulled them out of the jam with the help of junior setter Jordan Weitzel.
Millbrook took a big lead in the fifth set, but Emerald took that lead away when she got the ball to serve, down 14-5. Emerald had eight straight scoring points to bring the Pride back to 14-13. But on her ninth serve, Heritage fell short and Millbrook took the set and the match with a 15-13 win.
“It was a really great game, we fought really hard, and I felt that we put in our all at the end and that’s all I could really ask for,” Emerald said. “[That] overpowered the fact that we lost and ended it on a good note.”
The match marked the final time Emerald or Lydon would play volleyball for the Pride at Heritage High School in a regular season contest.
“I’m very proud of them, and I’m going to miss them a lot,” said Lydon regarding her senior year team.
“I love them and I’m going to miss them so much. They are probably one of my favorite teams I’ve been on,” Emerald said.
On Thursday, Oct. 30, Heritage will travel to Purcellville where they will take on the Woodrove High School Wolverines at 7 p.m.