MONTVILLE, NJ - The Montville Mustangs volleyball team extended their win streak to nine in a row on Friday, defeating the Hanover Park Hornets at home in straight sets in their first round matchup in the Morris County tournament. Nicole Villamil had another great all-around performance with ten kills, five digs, three blocks and three aces. The most underrated factor in this match would be Julianna Paslawsky, who tallied 22 assists on the night.
Hanover Park started strong, matching second-seeded Montville blow-for-blow early on in the first set. The Mustangs would end up pulling away to win the set 25-16. Villamil loved the resiliency she saw from her team after their slow start.
“We came in nervous because of our seed,” Villamil said. “Once we got out to a lead, those nerves really went away.”
The Hornets once again got off to a good start in the second set and were able to neutralize Villamil for most of the set. After a timeout with a marginal 16-15 lead, the senior came back even stronger and helped pace a 9-3 run to win the set 25-18 to take the match.
“Nicole is an amazing player,” head coach Angelica Piccolo said. “The one thing about her is that if you block her, she’s going to come back even meaner than the first time.”
Despite the win, the Mustangs couldn’t help but to commend the Hornets for giving them a fight after winning handily for the majority of their ongoing win streak.
“They really played up to our level instead of us playing down to theirs,” Villamil said. “It really made it an interesting game. I think that because of that, we came in stronger and had to play with a purpose in order to win.”
Next up for Montville in the Morris County tournament will be No. 7 seed Randolph, who defeated No. 10 seed Whippany Park in their first round matchup on Friday. This quarterfinal match will take place next week, but a date is still to be determined.