Mount Hebron had been pointing toward yesterday's match with Glenelg. The Gladiators beat Mount Hebron twice last year, and the Vikings were coming off of a shaky victory over Atholton earlier this week.
"This was the first big test for us," said Dani Vissers of Mount Hebron.
No. 4 Mount Hebron certainly passed. The Vikings played a strong all-around match, rolling through the first two games and then scoring the match's final 10 points for a 15-6, 15-6, 16-14 victory over visiting and No. 7 Glenelg in a Howard County match.
Vissers said the two losses last year stayed with Mount Hebron )) (6-0, 6-0). In addition, it now enters the tough part of the schedule, and Vissers said the Vikings wanted to make a good showing after losing a game to Atholton -- its first game loss this season.
"The team was really fired up," said Vissers.
And it showed. Vissers (six kills), Kate Hannas (six kills) and Lia Kaltreider (five kills) led the tough Mount Hebron play at the net. The Vikings finished with 27 kills.
Good passing set up most of the kills. Sarah Eberhart and Amanda Smith helped there, and Kerry Quinn did a nice job of picking up dinks. The Vikings did a much better job of serve-receiving and the passing turned balls that Glenelg (5-2, 4-2) sent over into an offense.
"We were able to control the passing," said Mount Hebron coach Jeannine McCrumb. "We passed a lot in practice. We were better [in this match because] we didn't hesitate."
The Vikings roared through the first two games. Vissers, Hannas and Kaltreider helped the Vikings score nine straight in the first game on the way to the 15-6 victory.
A six-point streak -- behind the serves of Smith -- broke open Game 2 early, and the Vikings cruised to another 15-6 victory. Strong serves helped in both games, as Mount Hebron took advantage of 10 aces.
Glenelg, behind the play of Elisa Davidson and Jaime Marshall, rallied in the third game. The Gladiators scored nine of 11 points to take a 14-6 lead and appeared on the verge of a big comeback.
Several errors helped Mount Hebron pull to 14-13 before a high shot dropped untouched on the Glenelg side to tie the score.
Sarah Nichols' ace gave the Vikings the lead and one final Glenelg error sealed the game and match.