North Raleigh: Sports

Huskies make history with playoff performance

Heritage’s Ally Harper (6) celebrates with teammates after winning a point. East Wake took on Heritage High in the second round of the NCHSAA 4A volleyball playoffs in Wake Forest, N.C. on October 21, 2014. Heritage won 3-0.
Heritage’s Ally Harper (6) celebrates with teammates after winning a point. East Wake took on Heritage High in the second round of the NCHSAA 4A volleyball playoffs in Wake Forest, N.C. on October 21, 2014. Heritage won 3-0. newsobserver.com

The past couple of weeks were filled with firsts for Heritage High volleyball.

The program made the state tournament for the first time, and days later the No. 23-seed Huskies gained their first playoff win topping No. 10 Durham Riverside 3-1 on the road in the first round last weekend.

Heritage went on to claim its first home playoff victory with a 3-0 win over East Wake Tuesday night before exiting in Thursday’s third round at No. 2 J.H. Rose in Greenville.

“This a great reward for all the hard work they have put in this season,” first-year Heritage coach Jessica Furlough said. “This was a goal that was set from day one and I’m glad they reached it.”

The Huskies (17-7, 8-6 Cap Eight) opened the season with six straight wins before going on a four-game losing streak.

Furlough said sometimes the team “would hang their heads and get down on themselves,” during that lull, but just getting past the first round of playoffs “helped them gain a little more confidence, which is what you [need] to have going through the playoffs.”

The Huskies quickly found themselves down 7-2 early in the first game before recovering to take the game 25-16.

“I guess they were nervous in the first game,” Furlough said. “I don’t think they expected [East Wake] to come out like that. I just hope they don’t take teams for granted [from now on].”

After regaining their focus, the Huskies quickly took the next game 25-16, ultimately riding that momentum to a 25-19 victory in the third game to complete the sweep.

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