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The calendar flips to October, meaning mid-season form is the goal of every team in boys volleyball and cross country, while golf’s postseason is in full swing.
The uncharacteristic struggles of Atlee continued at Glen Allen Tuesday night. After winning a dramatic first set 26-24, the Raiders fell apart, committing unforced errors, service errors, and allowing the Jaguars to seize control of the match, winning in four sets (24-26, 25-14, 25-10, 25-17). Glen Allen has won seven of their last eight, while Atlee fell to 7-9.
For a team with 20-plus wins each of the last five seasons, it’s a tough pill for head coach Nick Robinson to swallow.
“Poor choices, poor hitting decisions…we were hitting balls four of five feet out,” Robinson said dejectedly. “It’s no longer an excuse that we’re young, or inexperienced. It’s midseason.”
After hosting Armstrong Thursday, the Raiders must go to Hanover next Tuesday, a team on a roll after knocking off county rival Patrick Henry Monday and Henrico on Tuesday to even their season mark to 8-8. The Patriots bounced back Tuesday with a four-set victory over Maggie Walker Governors School, as Lucas Pienkowski rolled off 10 aces and 13 kills for Patrick Henry, now 11-6.
Atlee golfers were nothing if consistent on Day 1 of the Class 5A South Regional Golf Tournament at The Hamptons Golf Course in Hampton. Garrett Palmer shot an eight-over 79, while teammates Matthew Sweeney and Phillip Sening each shot an 80. All were individual qualifiers, but none were able to overcome deficits to advance to the Class 5A State Tournament next week.
Hanover’s Matt Alexander shot a first day 89 and was unable to qualify individually for the Class 4A State Tournament at the South Regionals Monday and Tuesday at Sleepy Hole Golf Course in Suffolk. Nearby Glen Allen High School product Matthew Cox did advance to state play, but only after holing his second shot on the first playoff hole from 130 yards out to beat out three other challengers for the sixth and final state berth.
Paul Adam led a Lee-Davis contingent at the Great American Cross Country Festival in Cary, N.C. Saturday, finishing eighth in the Boys Seeded Invitational competition, with a time of 16.17.1. His teammate, Grayson Morgan, was just behind in 10th (16.22.1) The Confederates as a team finished 11th out of 18 competing teams.
The Lee-Davis girls team finished 13th in the “red” division, with Maggie Morgan being the Confederates’ highest finisher in 46th with a time of 20:53.5.
Meanwhile the Atlee Raider boys were victorious in an old fashioned “Capital District” meet last Wednesday held at Atlee High. Raiders standout Nathaniel Hall was victorious, winning in a time of 16:25, while teammate Dylan Richeson placed sixth at 17:31.
The Raiders will next compete at the 21st Annual Glory Days Grill Invitational in Manassas on Saturday.