PA Lady Spikers Win Big Battles With Nashua Contingents

Knowing full well that the Nashua North Lady Titans are a tough opponent to defeat each and every year, veteran Pinkerton Academy girls’ volleyball coach Todd Royce was entirely prepared for his charges to engage in an intense and fiery battle with that opponent in a season-opening match in Derry last Friday, Sept. 5.

And Royce wasn’t disappointed in any way after holding those expectations, and he had plenty of reasons to be proud of his spikers after they outlasted the Lady Titans for a 3-2 Pinkerton victory.

The see-saw battle began with the visitors claiming a 25-21 win in game one. But the Lady Astros rebounded in game two to claim a lopsided, 25-15 victory and knot the match count at 1-1.

Nashua then rebounded masterfully in game three and claimed a lopsided, 25-16 win of its own to go up 2-1 in the match and stand within one more game win of the match victory.

However, coach Royce’s roster responded well in game four and toughed out a 25-23 win and forced a deciding fifth contest.

And his charges went to work in earnest with all they had left in them in that deciding game, besting the Nashua side by a 15-8 tally to take the match.

Elizabeth Hicks had a big match for the victorious hosts, tallying 31 assists and collecting some 16 service points, including a handful of aces.

Lexi Verreault was good for 37 digs for the winning side, Olivia Mathieu smacked down 18 kills, Alexis Bowers contributed 12 kills, and Michaela Blackwell claimed five blocks as the Lady Astros opened the new season with a hard-fought win of which they could be plenty proud.

And the Lady Astros shoved their record up to a perfect 2-0 this past Monday night, Sept. 8, when they bested the Nashua High South lady spikers by a 3-1 tally.

Coach Todd Royce’s PA crew showed plenty of mental toughness – not to mention skill – in rebounding from a 1-0 match deficit to win the battle.

The hosts bagged wins of 25-13, 25-18, and 25-22 in games two through four after dropping a 25-22 decision in game number one.

“Volleyball is a game of runs, and the team that has the ability to stop the other teams’ runs and turn them around is going to be successful. And we did that today,” said Royce.

The Lady Astros showed their fire and the aforementioned mental toughness late in game one, rebounding from a 10-2 South run which had seemingly put the game out of reach. Royce’s roster reeled off an 8-2 run of its own and tightened the contest after the Nashuans had driven to within two points of the win at 23-14. But the Lady Purple Panthers ended up taking that game by the 25-22 tally.

The Lady Astros powered their way to the lopsided 25-13 win in game two, drove through the tie-laden first part of game three (nine total ties) to win by a 25-18 score, and claimed the 25-22 win in the deciding fourth game after it looked as they were going to post a blowout early when they tallied the first seven points of that contest.

Powers collected 19 service points with 11 aces along with six kills.

Hicks was good for 14 service points and 19 assists, Mathieu notched 11 kills and 11 service points, Verrault tallied 26 digs and eight service points with four aces, and Nicole Langlais contributed 15 digs.