By Tom Robinson, NEPASportsNation.com
PLAINS TWP. – Kaylee Hacker serving played a major role in transitioning Berwick from the first set to the second and again from the second to the third Thursday night.
With Hacker’s serving and Cecelia Isenberg’s play at the net leading the way, Berwick dominated the middle portion of the match on the way to a 25-14, 25-7, 25-18 sweep of Nanticoke in the District 2 Class 3A girls volleyball championship match at Wilkes-Barre Area High School.
Hacker’s serves led to points on 21 of 22 tries during one stretch within Berwick longer period of dominance. The Lady Bulldogs outscored the Trojanettes 47-12 from midway through the first set until nearly a third of the way through the third set.
“It’s more ‘let’s get the first few over the net’, then think more strategically,” said Hacker, who finished with 22 service points, 4 aces, 5 kills and 2 digs. “For me, at least, I just have to keep it in my mind that I just want to keep going and I can’t be scared to make a mistake.”
Hacker had plenty of time to think strategically.
The first set had been tied eight times when Berwick broke the last deadlock of the night at 11-11.
The Trojanettes kept it close at 17-14 until Berwick regained serve and Hacker led the team through the final seven points for a 25-14 victory.
“Earlier in the season, we changed our lineup and included Kaylee in the service lineup,” Berwick coach Sarah Warner said. “I think that was a huge benefit to our team.”
Berwick regained the serve on the first point of the second set and Hacker ran off seven more for an 8-0 lead.
Hacker served the last seven points of the second set rout, then the first two points of the third set.
Berwick went on to take an 8-2 lead in the third set on its way to the sweep.
While Hacker’s addition to the service lineup came during the season, Isenberg was a force from the start after playing a leading role in Berwick’s Wyoming Valley Conference and District 2 Class 3A titles in 2020.
Isenberg had 24 kills and 9 digs in the district final with help from Morgan Nevel’s 34 assists and 18 digs.
“We’ve been working hard,” Isenberg said. “We wanted to make sure people knew we could finish it and not have to take it five sets.
“We had the ability to stop it there.”
Camille Pinterich added nine digs, seven points and three assists for Berwick while Erin Hess had eight digs, six kills and four points.
Myla Vnuk led Nanticoke with 10 kills, 10 digs, two aces and a block. Brooklyn Biehl added 11 assists, 6 digs and 3 kills.
Kylie Albert added eight digs while Cassie Cabanilas and McKenzie Ball had six each.
Berwick-Nanticoke Photo Gallery: https://nepasportsnation.com/berwick-nanticoke-girls-volleyball-photo-gallery/.