With North Forsyth and Pinecrest being members of classifications on opposite ends of the GHSA spectrum, it could have been easy for anyone to assume the Lady Raiders would have skated through their county foe Tuesday night.
That wasn't the thinking of anyone from North or Pinecrest's camp, however. Pinecrest beat North in a tournament last season, and the Lady Paladins looked primed to earn a big win on their home floor after winning the opening set 25-20, but ultimately the Lady Raiders covered ground after a slow start—much like they have all season so far—to win the match 2-1 and improve to 8-4 on the season.
“We had prepared for this match. We were in a tournament with them last year and they beat us, so we have not traditionally beat Pinecrest,” North head coach Amy Stewart said. “We were really amped up for it, we knew it was a county match. I would like to say we came out cleaner and more prepared to play from the start, but we did win.”
North couldn't get out of its own way in the early going, giving Pinecrest six of its first seven points on attack and service errors. North had nine errors at the first timeout, trailing 14-10, and finished the first set with 15 errors, while it had just 14 more the rest of the match.
“It's the same thing we keep seeing. We're a young team with two seniors. We have not gotten our errors under control yet. Once we get that under control we can start to build some momentum,” Stewart said.
After giving up the first set, North won the next two 25-15 and 25-17. Maddie Bryant led the way for North, registering seven kills, three aces and a block point, while Bri Gilbert had nine kills. Freshman Mary Ellen Enright had two crucial aces in the second set, while Marin Black had two aces and three kills.
Pinecrest (6-7) had to go without injured stars Catherine Clark and Brook Miller, but still got production from Gabby Wesemeyer, who played injured but had four kills and four points off blocks. Adeline Seiferth had seven kills, while Tessa Stubbs added five.
Pinecrest coach Sandy Seiferth knew her team believed it would win from the get go.
“Yeah they did, they totally did. We're not as deep, we have a shorter bench, but the girls on the court are always in it and they want to take it to state, so they were there to play today,” Seiferth said.