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Payton pulls away from Young in city showdown

04/02/2013, 9:50pm CDT
By Michael Wojtychiw

In a matchup of the Public League’s top two teams, Payton defeated host Young 21-25, 25-20, 25-12 Tuesday afternoon in both teams’ conference opener.

In a matchup of the Public League’s top two teams, Payton showed that sometimes practice isn’t perfect. The Grizzlies, who have yet to have a full practice with all of their players present, defeated host Young 21-25, 25-20, 25-12 Tuesday afternoon in both teams’ conference opener.

“It was nice to finally play with my team,’’ said Payton star Earl Schultz, who made his season debut with the team after being in Spain for the Grizzlies’ first five matches.

Schultz was in Spain for a school trip.

Payton coach Casey Feeney also said that he was missing a couple players from the team this week because they were also overseas on a school trip.

After a sluggish start in the first set, Payton regained its composure but Young was too powerful putting the visitors away 25-21. After Payton rallied to tie the set at 19, a kill by Tom Wesolowski sparked the Dolphins (0-2, 0-1 Gold) who went on a 6-2 run to win the set.

The second set was more representative of what people would expect from the top two teams in the Public League. Back and forth to start the set, Payton created some distance from the Dolphins by going on 4-0 and 6-3 runs, ultimately giving the Grizzlies the largest lead of the set at 18-12. Young could get no closer than five the rest of the way.

The third set belonged to Payton, which broke a 3-3 lead by going on a 10-4 run, essentially putting the match away. Alex Bressler, who was last year's setter, is now being relied on more to be a hitter as the Grizzlies (5-1, 1-0) ran somewhat of a 6-2 formation. The senior had three of his 12 kills in the Grizzlies’ 12-4 run that ended the match.

“It’s kind of a shame we had to play Young so early in conference, but it helps us know where we stack up against a team like that,’’ said Schultz, who finished with 13 kills. “The rivalry between the two of us makes us just want to become better.’’

Tom Wesolowski had a match-high 17 kills for Young, which lost its starting setter last week.

 

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