Down two games to none, Sparrows Point looked and played more relaxed in the third game of last night's Class 1A volleyball state semifinal against Williamsport.
"If that could have happened in the second game," said Sparrows Point coach Melissa Svendsen, "maybe we could have taken it somewhere."
The third game was more competitive, but like the first two, the outcome was never in doubt. Williamsport won the match, 15-0, 15-3, 15-9, at CCBC-Essex and will meet Allegany, a 15-13, 15-0, 15-13 winner over Perryville, at 2: 30 p.m. Saturday at CCBC-Catonsville for the state title.
Svendsen said the Pointers (17-3) "have the same skill level" as Williamsport. "But our serving was off, our passing was off and we just weren't as aggressive as we usually are."
Senior Jackie Kuemmer agreed.
"We just weren't moving our feet," Kuemmer said. "We watched too much. We didn't go after it."
And added senior Michelle Stallings: "We made a lot of stupid mistakes."
Stallings, who was here with her teammates two years ago when the Pointers lost in four games to Glenelg in the semifinals, said her team "got scared" early. "We weren't expecting what they gave us."
What Williamsport had was superior hitting at the net and accurate passes.
"We started to let down after they started pounding us a couple of times," said Kuemmer. "By the time we got up, it was too late."
Kuemmer said that Williamsport (17-1), which beat defending state Class 1A champion Smithsburg in the South region final, played with more desire.
"They wanted it more and stepped up and proved it," Kuemmer said.
Added Svendsen: "Overall we just made too many mistakes. They all wanted it, but they just couldn't quite put it together."