Hawks top Kennedy; sit in first-place tie

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BEACON FALLS — In a meeting of two unbeaten teams—one power and one upstart—power won out in the end. After dropping the first game, Woodland (5-0 entering the match) staved off Kennedy (6-0 when the evening began) Wednesday night, 3-1 (15-25, 25-23, 25-15, 25-23).

The Eagles won 10 of the match’s first 14 points, prompting Hawks coach Jim Amato to call time out, in an effort to regroup. But his squad rarely strung together consecutive points and the Eagles, though not a big-hitting team, made few errors, constantly keeping the ball in play en route to a 10-point win.

At first, game two looked like it would be much of the same. The Black and Gold started on serve, but Kennedy forced immediately a side out and took a 3-1 lead. Woodland responded with its first three-point run of the evening and kept it close throughout the game. Forty points in, the second stanza was knotted at 20 with the Hawks on serve. The Eagles claimed the next three points, but a clutch block by Erika Barnett gave Woodland a much-needed side out. Four straight service points by Kate Frennette—including a final ace—secured a game-two win for Woodland and swung the momentum of the match.

Setter Jess Patrizi spread out her 39 assists, pacing a balanced Woodland attack. The home team’s kill totals were 12 by Kaiti Lembo, 11 by Erika Barnett, nine by Stephanie Badale, eight by Desiree Duby and six by Emily Hutvagner.

The Hawks followed up that victory with another at Torrington Thursday but was swept, 3-0, at home Monday night by Seymour. Woodland, Kennedy and Seymour now find themselves in a first-place, one-loss triangle: The Hawks’ loss is to the Wildcats, the Cats’ is to the Eagles, and the Eagles’ is to the Hawks.