Sports

Chatham Girls Volleyball Kicks Off Cougar Fall Weekend with Victory Over Sparta

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Mary Williams goes up for one of her 13 kills in the game for Chatham Credits: Matthew Ambrose
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Alex Shaw sets the ball for Chatham Credits: Matthew Ambrose
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Mary Williams hits a serve for Chatham vs. Sparta Credits: Matthew Ambrose
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Mary Williams and Molly Brown track the ball for Chatham Credits: Matthew Ambrose
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CHATHAM, NJ - It’s been frustrating at times this season for the Chatham girls volleyball team, but it was all jubilation on Wednesday night as the Lady Cougars earned a 2-0 victory over Sparta.

“It’s very exciting, considering how our season hasn’t been going the way we wanted it,” Chatham’s
Mary Williams said about the win. “Sparta’s a really good team.”

The game had a late start as Chatham High School is holding its annual Cougar Weekend, meaning
more fans can come and support the team. While this extra support got the team amped up, head
coach Anna Amster thinks that the team just got sick of losing.

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“I think we’re just getting to a point where their kind of unhappy with the season we’ve been having,”
Amster said. “Everything lined up today for them to turn it around.”

Both sets were close, with the Cougars coming out on top in set one, 25-20, thanks to a couple blocks at
the net to seal the deal.

The second set had some on the edge of their seats. With the Lady Cougars leading 22-16, looking primed to capture the win, Sparta reeled off seven straight points to take a 23-22 edge, looking to force a third and decisive set. Chatham called timeout to regroup, and it made all the difference.

Chatham would win three of the final five points, including back-to-back aces by Alex Shaw with the
scored tied 24-24, giving Chatham the 26-24 victory. Williams had a big night on the offensive end with 13 kills, including several key hits down the stretch to propel her team to victory.

“I just like to hit the ball,” Williams said. “It’s so much fun. I wanted to win, I’m tired of losing.”

“We’ve been talking to her about pushing every single point and swinging to win, not just swinging
safe,” Amster said about the junior Williams. “I think that’s the mentality every single one of them took on. They weren’t scared to lose and they were here to win, and they did.”

Amster noted last week about how her team lacked “consistency.” On Wednesday, she was satisfied with the level of play her players showed.

“Every single person wanted it,” she said. “It was seen in their play, they didn’t give up on balls, they didn’t get down on themselves. They played with heart and it showed.”

The team is back in action next Monday when they take on Morristown at home at 4 p.m.

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