SILVER SPRING TOWNSHIP — If there was any worry that Cumberland Valley’s familiarity with its District 3 Class 3A boys volleyball quarterfinal opponent, Chambersburg, would breed complacency, the Eagles put that to quick rest Monday night.
No. 1 Cumberland Valley (17-0) reeled off the first eight points knocking the Trojans on their heels from the first serve on the Eagles’ way to a 25-11, 25-11, 27-25 straight set victory over their Mid-Penn Commonwealth rivals. CV had previously topped Chambersburg twice this season, both by a 3-1 tally.
“We couldn’t have asked for a better start,” Cumberland Valley head coach Terry Ranck said. “Had the regular season went differently, and we split, we might come into this with a different mental state. But we’re playing confidently right now, and you’re going to have to beat us. We’re not going to give games away.”
No. 9 Chambersburg (11-6) burned two timeouts at 7-0 and 13-2 in the first set to try and change the momentum, but it did little as the Eagles steamrolled the Trojans behind big games from Blake Liprando and Dylan Buzalka.
“Dylan is very fast,” Ranck said. “He gets off the ground quickly, and that comes from basketball. He gets up and hits a really heavy ball. He’s getting smarter and taking good, aggressive swings.”
The second set began as a back-and-forth affair until CV’s Bryar McAllister controlled the action with a dominating, pinpoint service game. The Eagles ran off 13 straight points behind the senior outside hitter to turn a 9-8 lead into a 22-8 blowout.
“Bryar got on an incredible service run,” Ranck said. “I think he served 23 times in the first two sets, which is crazy. It’s just a flip serve, but he was moving the ball around and putting it where I was telling him where to put it. We got them in all kinds of trouble, and we converted just about everything.”
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The third set wasn’t as easy for Cumberland Valley, which erased a deficit by as much as six at one point. The Eagles chipped away at Chambersburg’s lead until they evened it up at 20 apiece on another Liprando kill. The squads traded points until an Iaon Spangler block gave the Eagles the 27-25 win and match victory.
Volleyball in the Liprando household is a family affair amongst the three brothers.
“We played about as well as we can in the first two games,” Ranck said. “It was nice to see them battle back and not give that game away.
“It was nice to be pushed.”
Jesse King led the Eagles with 20 digs while Liprando paced the team with 19 kills and three blocks.
Next up for the Eagles is a semifinal matchup with Central York, straight set winners over Hempfield, on Wednesday at 6 p.m. at a site to be determined. The pairing is a rematch of last year’s semifinal that Cumberland Valley won in four sets.
Cumberland Valley is looking for their first District 3 title since 2008.