In a thrilling five set match, the varsity volleyball team beat Potsdam to win the Sectional title. The Bears won the first two sets, 25-12, 25-20, only to have the Sandstoners answer with winning two sets, 21-25, 23-25. The fifth set was back and forth even being tied at 13, 14, and 15. Canton went on a run sparked by Sydney Lorenc’s kill and won the match 25-18.

This was the third matchup between the two teams this season, they split the first two, and Canton had studied the tendencies of their opponent leading up to the game. The Bears have also been focusing on their strength and cardio which came into play with a long game, where the team needed that endurance. Preparation was the name of the game for Canton, and this helped tremendously when it came to serve receive.

The key to the three successful sets for the team was their offense. Canton’s big hitters were pounding the ball and winning points in the first two sets. The following two sets found the Bears on defense scrambling to keep the ball in play. The fifth set, the team refocused and found their power once again to win. When the game was tied Lorenc scored a huge kill to shift momentum for Canton. The Canton fan section also helped the team gain confidence in the final set with loud cheering, thank you. Gretchen Warner then went on a serving streak for the team and eventually Lorenc served the final points and Jillian DiSavlo scored two kills to win the final two points. Every member of the squad knew their individual role and was successful in leading the team to victory. Libero Gabby Rauth held the back row steady for the Bears while Setter Kelsea Whittier controlled the offense.

Rauth returned 12 serves and had six digs. Power hitters Warner, DiSalvo, and Lorenc had 19, 12, and 10 kills respectively. Eighth grader Ava Hoy, joined the trio of hitters with seven assists. Grace Franklin served nine points and Whittier assisted 38 times, a career high.

Canton will play again on Friday night in Massena at 4 P.M. against Ogdensburg for the overall Section X title. The team will also play next Thursday in Gloversville, NY for the state playoffs against the winner of Section 2. Go Bears!

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