Stratford roars back for five-set win over Abbotsford

Stratford roars back for five-set win over Abbotsford

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Stratford roars back for five-set win over Abbotsford

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STRATFORD

The Stratford volleyball team dug a hole for themselves that they almost couldn’t climb out of. The Tigers, however, roared back to stun visiting Abbotsford Tuesday night at Stratford High School.

Abby took the first two games and had a match point in the fourth but Stratford found another gear.

The set scores were 17-25, 26-28, 25-19, 26-24 and 15-11.

“The tough part was being able come back from 2-0,” said Stratford coach Brooke Brandenburg. “It’s something we’ve been working on all season; to keep fighting. They said ‘Coach, are you proud? We came back.’ Absolutely!”

The Tigers will play No. 1 seed Athens Thursday at 7 p.m. in Athens. The Bluejays received a first round bye.

It didn’t look like there would be a Thursday for the Tigers.

Abby used a 5-0 run in the middle of the first game to take command and win easily.

The second game was closer, but was the same result for Stratford. The Tigers took their first lead of the match at 11-10 but couldn’t hold on.

The Tigers took over the third game at 9-8 and never looked back, winning 25-19 and gaining momentum in the process.

“It’s my senior year,” said Stratford senior Brooke Schultze who led her team with two blocks and added 10 kills. “I didn’t want to leave my team with a loss in their first playoff game. My team did a phenomenal job. We have a good program thanks to our coaches.

The fourth game was close throughout although Abby did lead 17-11 and had a match point.

“We fought hard,” said Abby coach Kayla Laher. “When it came down to it, we needed to make key plays and we didn’t. We had a few too many errors. There’s a lot of positives to take away. We had a great season. We’ll look at the positives and prepare for next season.”

The Tigers rode the wave into the final game and led by as many as five before settling for the 15-11 win.

Marissa Wussow led Stratford in kills with 13. Teammate Mackenzie Hannan had 12 kills and 19 assists. Justine Drews finished with 36 digs for the Tigers.

“We have a good group of seniors that tend to take control,” concluded Brandenburg.

“This same group has been working hard all year and it’s paying off for them.”

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