Towson volleyball rallies to beat Hereford for county championship

On a night when Towson and Hereford played inspired volleyball for two pulsating hours in the Baltimore County championship, Towson had the final word and handed the Bulls their first loss of the season.

And the Generals did it rallying from a two-set deficit before going on to post a 17-25, 23-25, 25-18, 25-18, 15-8 victory in Parkton.

“It shows we go down against a really good team and fight back,” said Towson coach Emily Berman, whose team also won county titles from 2008 to 2011. “It says something about their character and work ethic.”

Junior outside hitter Sara Mandreja (21 kills, 9 digs) performed admirably for the Generals, a Class 3A state semifinalist last year who extended their winning streak to 13 after a 1-2 start.

“She was the key in the match,” Berman said. “She went after every ball and became the leader with her work ethic.

Junior outside hitter Nicole Race (13 kills, 10 digs) junior setter Logan Marsh (46 assists) and senior middle hitter Michaila Sheedy (7 blocks, 3 kills) also sparked the winners.

Race helped changed the momentum of the match with six kills in the third game.

Towson got off to a 13-5 lead and never trailed.

“I told the kids, ‘Not to let up,’” Hereford coach Dave Schreiner said. “You don’t want them to come back and steal one. Then, they are back in it. They feel like they can win another one and all of a sudden we are in a match we are losing control of.”

Hereford (14-1) played better in the fourth set and led 5-3. There were four times before Towson started to take control behind the serving of Race.

The Generals bolted out to a 10-3 lead in the final set before Mandreja finished the Bulls off on a kill.

Senior outside hitters Emerson Gieryic (11 kills) and Erin Collins (18 digs), junior outside hitter Maggie May (8 kills) and senior middle hitter Yasmine Sakinejad (8 kills) led Hereford.

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