Ridgefield girls volleyball team sweeps New Canaan
Two days after taking down the conference's top squad in a five-game thriller, the Ridgefield High girls volleyball team had a quicker victory Friday evening.
Playing at home on Senior Night, Ridgefield swept New Canaan, 3-0. The Tigers won the match by scores of 25-20, 25-13, and 25-21.
The triumph, which followed a 3-2 win over St. Joseph on Wednesday, improved Ridgefield's overall record to 10-6 entering the final week of the regular season.
“We just rolled right in after beating St. Joseph,” said Ridgefield head coach Lidania Cibere after the sweep of New Canaan. “That confidence of knowing what we’re capable of brought even more communication and energy for Senior Night, and clearly it showed.”
New Canaan took an early lead in the opening game, but the Tigers rallied behind a service-point run from libero Joyce Li, who also contributed several diving digs during the match. Senior captain Mackenzie Wanicka finished the game with back-to-back kills as Ridgefield went ahead, 1-0.
“We’re a young team — we didn’t anticipate being as strong a team this year,” said Wanicka. “To see this level of success on my Senior Night ... it’s reassuring to know I’m leaving this team with hopeful prospects.”
The second game was defined by Ridgefield's early dominance. Sophomore Isabel Voellmicke’s well-placed pushes over the net extended the Tigers' lead before senior Caroline Holloway’s five-point serving streak clinched the 25-13 victory.
“I think it’s safe to say the growing pains are over,” said Holloway. “If these girls continue the energy they had tonight next year, they’re going to keep being successful.”
Julia Kocsis’s eight-point serving streak in the third set was prolonged by two kills from Wanicka and an impressive block from sophomore Kate Garson. The Rams ended the run on a spike and then encroached on Ridgefield's lead, but repeated blocks from senior Ava Fazio halted New Canaan’s momentum as the Tigers completed the sweep.
“It means a lot to see these younger [players] want to win for us seniors,” said Fazio. “That desire to win will keep us going for the rest of the season and hopefully carry on next year as well.”
Wanicka finished with 12 kills and six digs for Ridgefield. Fazio had three blocks, while Kocsis and Li each added nine digs. Li added 11 service points for the Tigers.