Frontier volleyball uses mix of old and new to sweep West Springfield

  • Olivia Deane, of Frontier Regional, serves against West Springfield, Thursday in South Deerfield.  COURTESY MEGHAN SELF

  • Olivia Rosewarne, of Frontier Regional, serves against West Springfield, Thursday in South Deerfield.  COURTESY MEGHAN SELF

  • Frontier Regional and West Springfield shake hands after a volleyball match, Thursday in South Deerfield.  COURTESY MEGHAN SELF

  • Jalen Sullivan, of Frontier Regional, goes for a kill against West Springfield, Thursday in South Deerfield.  COURTESY MEGHAN SELF

Staff Writer
Published: 9/19/2019 9:54:08 PM
Modified: 9/19/2019 9:53:55 PM

SOUTH DEERFIELD — With an eclectic mix of experienced players taking the court with newer players, the Frontier Regional volleyball team swept West Springfield, 3-0, on Thursday night at Goodnow Gymnasium.

Frontier coach Sean MacDonald got the whole varsity roster onto the hardwood against the Terriers (2-4) in a .

“I see them every day in practice, and they work hard,” MacDonald said. “I want to try to get them in when I can.”

The rotation rested some of the starters as the Red Hawks (5-2) host Westborough on Friday night.

“We have a tough one (Friday),” MacDonald said. “It was a good opportunity to get some people in and a little rest for the other ones because they will probably be playing a little more (Friday).”

The Terriers fell behind quickly in the first set with Frontier’s Abbe Roberts on the end line. The Red Hawks scored five straight points during Roberts’ service to take a 6-1 lead in the first set. Olivia Deane’s third kill of the first set gave Frontier a 12-2 lead.

Deane led the Red Hawks with eight kills. Some were of the emphatic and powerful variety, while others were well placed.

“We’ve had a lot of tough games because we’ve played some tough D-1 opponents,” Deane said. “But from that we have just been trying to improve every day in practice. This game was really good because we reduced our errors. We’ve been trying really hard to reduce our hitting errors because we’ve been having trouble with that.”

The Red Hawks defense got contributions from all over with Olivia Rosewarne (three), Deane (five), Jalen Sullivan (six), Roberts (three), Tia Gottschalk (three) and Olivia Simoneaux (five) all recording multiple digs.

“I feel like everyone played a part in it,” Deane said.

Rosewarne is the setter for the Red Hawks, and outside of Sullivan and Deane, she’s working with a new group of hitters who have shown improvement each match.

“We have a really good chemistry,” Rosewarne said. “Especially with the newer players. I set them the ball and then get feedback and try to make it better for them each time.”

Deane and Rosewarne led the Red Hawks with five and four aces, respectively. Sullivan added three more.

With the Terriers gaining some momentum in the first set, a well placed kill by Sophia Stilla in West Side’s unoccupied corner gave Red Hawks the lead at 20-9.

A Morgan Martineau kill closed out the first set for the Red Hawks.

“We have a lot of new hitters this year,” Deane said. “We’ve been really focused on getting the ball in. Seeing the players come in for me makes me so happy because they work equally as hard as me.”

Charlotte Doulette and Lilah Evans had two kills each for the Red Hawks.

The Red Hawks fell behind 9-5 in the second set, but Deane’s serve gave them 10 consecutive points to take control.

MacDonald quoted famous volleyball coach Hugh McCutcheon in describing where his team is at this stage of the season.

“‘It is my job to be perpetually dissatisfied,’” MacDonald said.

There are always things Frontier can improve when a state title is always a goal for the team.

“But we are improving,” MacDonald said. “With what we have lost and who we have played, I think we are right where we should be but we’re always trying to get a little better.”

A big block by Doulette helped change momentum in the third set. Doulette had her second kill of the match to move the score to 20-16 in the last set.

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