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Wolverine volleyball starts strong

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By Michael Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor

The Westwood High School girls varsity volleyball team has roared out the gates this 2017 season to a 3-0 start. The Wolverines began the campaign with back-to-back road matches at Dedham and Norton, and both times, the Wolverines returned home with 3-0 shutout victories.

Last Monday, the Wolverines played host to Millis in their home opener, and behind a strong effort by senior Mackenzie Draper (10 kills, two blocks), Westwood cruised to a 3-1 victory to move to 3-0 on the season.

Sophomore Katya Vertiova (22) serves up one of her two aces on the evening against Millis on Monday.

Sophomore Katya Vertiova (22) serves up one of her two aces on the evening against Millis on Monday.

The duo of Draper and sophomore Erin Craven (10 kills, one block) at the net was almost unstoppable against Millis. The two each notched 10 kills on the evening while playing in all four sets. Senior Jill Adams also had four kills in three sets played.

Seniors Lizzy Kelly (one ace, two blocks, five kills), Sarah McMahon (four aces, 11 returns) and Sara Cwieka (five aces, 19 assists, 51 BHA) were all key factors in the win over Millis as well, thanks to their strong serving abilities. Kelly finished the match with a serve percentage of 91.7, Cwieka an 87.5, and McMahon a 77.8.

Jill Adams (8), Sara Cwieka (14) and the Wolverines are all smiles after winning a point late in the fourth set of Monday night’s 3-1 win over Millis.

Jill Adams (8), Sara Cwieka (14) and the Wolverines are all smiles after winning a point late in the fourth set of Monday night’s 3-1 win over Millis.

"The team has developed a great chemistry very quickly,” said Westwood head coach Jennifer Murphy. "Lizzy Kelly and Sara Cwieka and our core group of seniors have provided excellent leadership. They've done a great job of setting season goals for themselves to keep the focus. As we set our sight on qualifying for the tournament early, the team has really used each game as a learning experience and push to work out the kinks as we move towards a run of challenging competition."

Following the win over Millis, Westwood dropped their first match of the season to an extremely talented Medway team on the road on Wednesday evening to move to 3-1 on the year. Two days later, the Wolverines again fell 3-1 to defending TVL champs Medfield, dropping to 3-2 on the year.

The Wolverines will look to get back on a winning note and capture another key TVL win when they travel to Bellingham on September 25.

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