High School Sports

Carrboro tops Farmville Central, makes third straight 2A East volleyball final

Carrboro's Grace Maggiore (14) and Destiny Cox (15) celebrate a point during the volleyball playoff match, which was played in Carrboro on November 1, 2016. Carrboro won 3-1.
Carrboro's Grace Maggiore (14) and Destiny Cox (15) celebrate a point during the volleyball playoff match, which was played in Carrboro on November 1, 2016. Carrboro won 3-1. newsobserver.com

#Jagswag.

That’s what a sign hanging from a football stadium fence overlooking Carrboro High’s parking lot read Tuesday night before an N.C. High School Athletic Association 2A fourth-round volleyball match.

The Farmville Central Jaguars took the swag message to heart in the opening game with a surprising 25-22 win over undefeated Carrboro Jaguars. But the home town regrouped to make quick work of the visitors for a 3-1 victory.

Carrboro (28-0) advanced to the Final Four by scores of 22-25, 25-10, 25-4, 25-11 to face Currituck County (19-1) in a Thursday home match that also serves as the East Regional championship.

The Jags are in the Final Four for the third straight year, but they are still looking for their first trip to a state final. The last two years Carrboro lost to South Granville in the East Regional championship.

“Our goal all year has been to get to the state final and then the pressure is off us,” Carrboro coach Steve Scanga said. “We made that our goal to get to the state final and just play volleyball. I’m not telling them to win the state title. Let’s get to the final and relax and play our game. We can make adjustments. We can move blocks and sets around. We can play different defenses.”

After breezing through the first three rounds of the state tournament with 3-0 sweeps, Carrboro junior Destiny Cox admitted the team might have felt some jitters now that they’re down to the roadblock they’ve hit in the past.

“Maybe it was the crowd and the excitement,” said Cox, a 6-foot-2 junior committed to North Carolina. “Our student section was awesome. We had a few nerves early. We just had to settle down and play our game.”

That included Cox leading Carrboro with 15 kills and senior setter Grace Maggiore adding 23 assists with five aces.

The N&O’s top-ranked team has often made quick work of opponents with 3-0 sweeps with Maggiore setting the thunder-and-lightning combination of Cox and Christine Alcox. But with Carrboro struggling early, Farmville Central brought out the best of Carrboro’s underappreciated depth.

Elizabeth Ollila, a 5-10 senior, was second with nine kills. Junior Emma Fritsch, senior Christine Alcox and senior Diana Alcox rounded out the balanced kill totals. Senior Zoe Hurwitz contributed digs and strong serves. Scanga also combined Maggiore and junior setter Sarah Montross on the court for extended periods. Montross finished with 13 assists and five aces.

“The depth on this team is incredible,” Cox said. “We know we have people that can play anywhere and anytime.”

Farmville Central, co-champions of the Eastern Plains Conference, ended the year 20-5 overall with two of those losses coming to undefeated teams (Carrboro and Williamston’s Riverside).

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