September 13th, 2022
Green sparks ACM in sweep of Lady Lakers
Sophomore sub's serving helps Lady Trojans regain momentum in Set 2
Garrett College freshman Daphne Harman goes up for a kill attempt in last Thursday night's volleyball match against visiting Allegany College of Maryland. ACM won, 3-0.
McHenry, MD Every coach would like their substitutions to work out this well.
Garrett College had just erased a 9-7 deficit, building a 12-10 lead in Set 2 as the Lady Lakers attempted to even Thursday night's women's volleyball match against Allegany College of Maryland at one set each. At that point, ACM head coach Joe Brewer inserted sophomore middle blocker DeMar'A Green to serve for the Lady Trojans.
ACM reeled off eight straight points on Green's serve, taking an 18-12 lead and regaining control of the match. The Lady Trojans rolled from there as they picked up a 25-10, 25-16, and 25-8 sweep.
"DeMar'A did a really nice job," said Brewer of Green, who had an ace and two service winners during the 8-0 spurt. "Serve specialist is one of her roles for us and she came off the bench to give us a really good run in the second set."
Kennedy Koelker's serving also played a key role in ACM's win. Koelker, serving first in the first and third sets, staked the Lady Trojans to a 4-0 lead in the opening set and a 7-0 start in the third, including five service winners over those 11 points. She also served four points during a 5-0 start in the second set, including another service winner.
"Kennedy was able to help us start strong in every set," said Brewer.
ACM's setting success was aided by the Lady Lakers' serve-receive challenges.
"We definitely struggled with serve-receive," said first-year GC head coach Brittany Jackson, whose inexperienced squad only had two practices under its belt prior to the season-opener against ACM. "We had three experienced players and three ‘newbies' out there," Jackson said of her starting lineup, which includes three players from the Lady Lakers' women's basketball team.
The good news for the Lady Lakers was that their play improved dramatically after a rough opening set.
"For a week of practice with a team full of basketball players, it was encouraging," said freshman setter Sierra Smith, who had three aces. "The potential here is crazy. I think our energy plus our bonding plus our effort and drive will cause us to go far."
Daphne Harman, a 5-foot-6 freshman outside hitter who played at Northern Garrett High, agreed.
"It definitely was encouraging, especially since most of the girls hadn't played volleyball before," said Harman, who had two kills for the Lady Lakers. "The new girls need to learn how to adjust to the serves, but they're getting it."
Jackson noted the strong play of Smith and Harman along with the first-match efforts of Josie Canales, one of the stars from last year's conference championship women's basketball team.
"Josie was a rock star – a really positive attitude and a lot of hustle," said Jackson.
ACM – coming off a tough, five-set loss to Howard Community College – evened its record at 1-1. Brewer, hired in June after the Lady Trojans went winless in 2021, built a roster comprised chiefly of local players from Allegany County high schools.
"I was able to recruit some of the kids who hadn't been going to ACM to play for the last several years – some Fort Hill players and some other local players," said Brewer, who coached 17 years at Fort Hill High.
The Lady Lakers are back in action Tuesday at 6 p.m. when they host Howard Community College.