HUDSON: The seniors wearing Hudson blue and white were not going to be denied a victory Tuesday night in Hyser Gymnasium.
Krissy Mummey, Celia Cristofoli and Georgia Lindner played integral roles in helping Hudson defeat rival Stow three sets to none on Senior Night in a Northeast Ohio Conference Lake Division match. The Explorers (15-6, 8-1) trailed temporarily in the first set en route to topping the Bulldogs (7-11, 6-3) by scores of 25-18, 25-14 and 25-14.
“I was really proud of my girls, especially since we were able to get everyone into the match,” Hudson coach Jessica Ciborek said. “Ending with all three seniors on the court was awesome. That was our goal, to really come here and dominate and to show them that we deserve to win in three on our home court.”
Mummey, Cristofoli and Lindner played together in the front row in the end.
“That was a great feeling,” Cristofoli said. “That was a feeling where you get the goose bumps, and you are happy for each other and the team.”
Hudson’s triumph keeps it in play in its quest for an NOC Lake Division title. The Explorers split the season series with Mentor. Hudson plays at Twinsburg on Thursday and Stow plays at Mentor on Thursday.
“It feels great to get this win,” said Mummey, who had 12 kills. “Stow has always been a big rival for us. In the past, we haven’t always come out with a win. This season, I am really proud of us for making it happen both times and not even letting it come close.”
Hudson beat host Stow earlier this season in four sets, but Tuesday’s match was not as close as the Explorers asserted themselves immediately.
“They are just the better team than we are,” Stow coach Miguel A. Ramirez said. “We just need to play better. Bottom line. They are a great team. They are the No. 1 team in our [Division I] district, and it is well deserved.”
Kent Roosevelt, Canfield and Stow are seeded 2 through 4 behind Hudson.
“We thought they would come out strong because last time in their home gym we beat them and it was kind of the same thing tonight,” Cristofoli said. “We got ahead and we just kept pushing and pushing, and they were falling behind.”
Cristofoli made an impressive play during the match when she dove near the spectators in the stands to save a possession. Her effort led to a Mummey kill.
“I know where the bleachers are, but not that well where I was looking up at the ball and sprinting and I was thinking ‘This is either going to be awesome or I might kill my shins and I might not get the ball,’ ” Cristofoli said. “Either way, it is the effort that looks good. I actually didn’t hit myself anywhere. I did not get hurt, but I was mentally prepared to ram my shins into the bottom bleacher. I was so thankful Krissy got the kill.”
Junior Gina Holland contributed 20 digs, 14 service points and two aces for Hudson.
“Tonight was really special because we were all able to get on the court and play as a family,” Lindner said. “Our team is a big family.”
Sophomore Amanda Przybocki added 31 assists, and junior Jordan Mackay and freshman Alena Madar also made an impact as starters.
“Our defense and hustle this year in general is 110 percent better than in the past two years,” Ciborek said. “We have been practicing really hard with high tempo. Every practice has been high intensity, and that showed tonight in that play [by Cristofoli].
Michael Beaven can be reached at 330-996-3829 or email@example.com. Read the high school blog at http://www.ohio.com/preps. Follow him on Twitter at http://twitter.com/MBeavenABJ and on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/sports.abj.