BAR HARBOR — The seven seniors on the Mount Desert Island High School varsity volleyball team left the final home game of their high school careers on a high note.
The Trojans beat the Ellsworth High School Eagles in four sets last Friday at home. The Eagles took the first set 25-23, but MDI came back to win the match 25-11, 25-10 and 25-14.
The Trojans improved to 9-4 for the season with just one regular season match remaining.
Before the game, seniors Valerie Del Cid, Alaina Duley, Grace Higgins, Emma Forthofer, Maddy Shields, Mariah Hamor and Emma Watras were recognized along with their parents for years of dedication and hard work.
The match belonged to them as Head Coach Corey Papadopoli played each senior in every set.
The Trojans took a timeout in the final minute of the fourth set for the seniors to swap positions with the underclassmen – a symbolic passing of the baton.
Each girl on the team sported pink socks and many wore pink ribbons or headbands in honor of breast cancer awareness month.
MDI and EHS were neck-and-neck throughout the first set, with both teams no more than two points ahead at any given time. The Eagles won the set but wouldn’t stay on top for long.
The Trojans came out strong in the second set, winning by 14 points, and kept up the momentum throughout the final two sets.
Higgins had nine aces, 10 kills and three digs; Forthofer had six aces, three kills, three digs and one assist; Hamor had three aces and three kills; and Shields had two aces and four kills.
“While our seniors started off slow [on Friday], dropping the first set to Ellsworth, they caught fire at the start of the second set with tough serving and solid hitting performances,” Papadopoli said. “Ellsworth showed some grit, but our seniors did a great job of keeping the momentum on our side. We will miss [the seniors] next year, but for now, we want to work hard to get good positioning in the playoffs and keep them around for as long as possible.”
MDI at Washington Academy
Earlier in the week, the Trojans outscored Washington Academy 3-1 in East Machias.
It looked like MDI could take the match in three sets after winning the first two 25-6 and 25-14. But Washington Academy came back fighting to win the third set 25-21.
The Trojans closed out the match with a 25-18 win in the fourth set.
“MDI played solid volleyball against WA, executing in all phases. We served tough, hit well and passed well,” said Papadopoli. “While we dropped the third set with some loss of focus, the girls came back to keep it close despite being down by 11.
“It’s always tough to be on the road on a school night, have to get off the bus and perform. But it’s what we need to do if we want to be successful in the playoffs.”
The girls head to Calais on Friday, Oct. 14, for their final regular season match. The playoff season begins on Friday, Oct. 21, with preliminary matches, although the brackets have not been set.