By Will Springstead / Special to The News
GLENS FALLS – The Panama girls volleyball team had some eye-catching points off long rallies Sunday but they were too few in a three-set sweep by Bainbridge-Guilford in the Class D final of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association tournament at Cool Insuring Arena.
The Bobcats defended their state title, 25-18, 25-19, 25-19.
“We had our moments but we just could not string it together,” Panama coach Tammy Hosier said.
B-G, from Section V, never trailed the first set. Panama rallied from 15-8 to tie it at 15 on Kylie Schnars’ block but that just stirred the beast in the Bobcats, as they scored the next five points en route to the win.
Panama took its first lead of the day at 16-15 of the second set, and increased it to 18-15 before the Selfridge sisters, senior Abigail and sophomore Erica, helped lead a B-G charge.
Abigail Selfridge (22 assists, nine kills, four aces) was named the Class D tournament MVP, with Erica Selfridge (12 kills, 12 assists) and Zamira Caldwell also making the all-tournament team for B-G.
“When we got our runs, we took them out of their game. Unfortunately, they got it right back. We knew where the ball was going,” Hosier said, referring to the Selfridges.
Senior Alexys Marsh (five kills, three digs, three blocks) and Schnars made the all-tournament team from Panama. Natalie Angeletti added five kills, nine digs, three blocks and 12 points. Madalyn Bowen had six kills, 17 digs, a block and four points.
B-G jumped out to a big lead in the third set before Panama rallied for four consecutive points to make it a 23-19 B-G lead. But a miscommunication and one final block that landed on Panama’s side closed out the match.
“I was proud of them they never quit,” Hosier said. “Our biggest thing is the way we get into the games is having that first pass and then killing it, and we struggled with that first pass today.”
Panama played solid defense throughout the match, and it seemed like the longer points went, the more it played into the Panthers’ hands. The Bobcats made sure that didn’t happen.