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Lancers need 3 sets to defeat Spartans


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POSTED: Wednesday, October 01, 2008

With the regular season winding down, Sacred Hearts gave itself a chance to climb the Interscholastic League of Honolulu girls volleyball standings with a much-needed win.

Senior Kylee Maneja finished with a team-high 14 kills and freshman Shawna-Lei Santos added 12 as the Lancers defeated Maryknoll 25-17, 21-25, 25-18 yesterday at Hawaii Baptist Academy's Dan Liu Gymnasium.

Sacred Hearts (7-5) moved within a game of the Spartans (8-4) for fourth place in the league with three games remaining. The Lancers close with winnable games against University, Lanakila Baptist and St. Andrew's Priory. Maryknoll still has to play Iolani (10-1) and Word of Life (8-3).

“;Big win for us, but every win is big for our team to help the confidence of our girls,”; Sacred Hearts coach Derwin Tsutsui said. “;I left it in the girls' hands. I told them they had to communicate and move and play with their heart.”;

The Lancers dropped out of the Star-Bulletin Top-10 this week, but might find themselves right back in it after yesterday's victory.

Maneja had six kills in the first set as Sacred Hearts scored 21 of the last 28 points to take the upper hand.

The Spartans came out blazing in the second set as Elissa Ji put down five of her match-high 15 kills as part of an 18-4 run. An ace by Kendall Kagawa put Maryknoll up 22-8 when the Lancers reeled off 11 consecutive points on the serve of Jami Asuncion.

A crucial hitting error gave Maryknoll the sideout it needed and Ji ended the set with a kill to even the match at one set apiece, but the comeback by the Lancers gave themselves the momentum heading into the decisive final set.

“;We were getting embarrassed and we don't want to look like that,”; said junior setter Morgan Donohue, who had 25 assists. “;We just put our hearts into the game and didn't give up.”;

Consecutive kills by Malia McGuinness gave Maryknoll its biggest lead of the final set at 14-10. The Lancers answered with Donohue feeding the ball to Maneja, who didn't let her team down.

She put down four straight kills and Sacred Hearts benefited from two questionable out calls toward the end of the set to finish on a 15-4 run to win the match and snap the Spartans' three-match winning streak.

“;In the beginning we were really down and quiet,”; Donohue said. “;We just need to talk. That's our biggest problem is talking. We talked more in the third game and did good.”;

The Lancers' block also forced the Spartans into tough hitting situations. Maryknoll committed 10 errors in the final set.