Novi cruises to sweep of rival Northville in KLAA Central action
Novi – As Novi entered Tuesday night fighting off different sorts of injuries that affected their lineup over the past few days, the Wildcats felt the need to put together as strong of a start as possible when they played host to rival Northville.
And that’s exactly what Novi was able to do as the Wildcats grabbed a 12-2 lead in the first game and went on to sweep the Mustangs, 25-19, 25-17 and 25-17.
Novi head coach Jennifer Cottrill said that she had her concerns about how her team would come out on Tuesday night, but said that the 12-2 start to open the patch really set the tone for her team going forward in the match.
“We’ve had some injuries and illnesses as of late, so I was a little bit worried about our energy and confidence, our lineup has changed drastically in the past week,” she said. “So that was the match, I feel like we brought the confidence and got right into rhythm.”
Novi (20-4-1) sprinted out to a 12-2 to game one and later led late in the game, 20-12, Northville managed to cut the Novi lead down to as little as two, as kills from Makenna Strunk and Katie O’Malley made it 21-19 in favor of the Wildcats.
“After our kids got the nerves out, then they really just went hard after it,” said Northville head coach Amanda Yaklin. “Even when we were down 20-12, they never gave up on it, they never saw the scoreboard, even though they started in the hole, which is pretty incredible.”
But the Wildcats held off the late push from Northville to take game one with the help of kills from Ally Cummings, Olivia Bradford and Victoria Iacobelli to close out the win, game two got off to a much more even start between the two teams, as they would exchange points to see game two tied up at 10-10.
“We really focused on winning the serve and pass battle,” Cottrill said. “I think we passed a little bit better than them, so our offense was able to be more spread out.”
The Wildcats would then go off on a 7-0 run, highlighted by three kills from Paulina Iacobelli to grab a 17-10 lead and would go on to grab the game two win, 25-17 after an ace from Jennifer Kulie would help seal the win.
Paulina Iacobelli said that she felt that the quick start to the first game really helped swing the momentum in Novi’s favor for the rest of the night and that played a big role for her and her teammates.
“We had a couple of injuries and in order to come back from that, we really focused on playing together in this game,” she said. “So to get that lead early, it helped us with the momentum and the crowd and it just carried us through the rest of the game.”
Paulina Iacobelli finished with 15 kills and 13 digs to help lead the way for Novi, while Victoria Iacobelli added in 10 kills and 10 digs for the Wildcats. Erin O’Leary also chipped in with 25 assists and 11 digs and Jordan Massab added 10 digs as well for Novi.