Historic playoff run comes to an end at the hands of Deep Run


Thomas Jackson

Senior captain Reagan Kruger goes up for a third Cavalier hit with two Deep Run blockers right against the net.

Cabot Butts, Editor

Last night, the girls volleyball team took on Deep Run in the 5C Regional semifinals. After a terrific performance against Douglas Freeman on Monday and a stellar upset victory against Glen Allen on Tuesday, the Cavs looked to continue their playoff magic against the Wildcats. Unfortunately, the glass slipper did not fit as the Cavs’ Cinderella story came to an end after three sets. 

From the beginning, Deep Run proved that their 17-1 regular season record was not a fluke. The Wildcats dominated, for the most part, the early stages of each set. However, the Cavaliers never quit, as after going down 14 to three in the first set, they were able to make an almost miraculous comeback, only dropping the set by a score of 25 to 21. 

During the set, Deep Run quickly went up eight to three, prompting a timeout by Cavalier head coach Mike Carter. While the timeout seemed to fall by the wayside, as the Wildcats scored six more unanswered points immediately following the stoppage, the Cavs clawed back, coming within three points before forcing a Deep Run timeout with the scoreboard reading 20 to 17. Thanks to three straight aces by junior Virginia Collins, the Green and Gold came within two points of the Wildcats before an additional two Deep Run points ended the set. 

A major theme of the match quickly became Deep Run’s fast starts. The Cavs seemed to play from behind for the entire match due to the Wildcats scoring, which came early and often. After quickly falling behind 12 to two in the second set, M. Carter called another timeout, this time to regroup his team and remind them to play their own game. The Cavaliers were able to score two consecutive points coming out of the timeout, one courtesy of an ace by junior Megan Bolin. The ace was one of only a few in the entire matchup, as both teams effectively kept the ball from hitting the ground following service. The Cavs were able to scrape away seven more points, but Deep Run proved to be too strong, winning the set 25 to 11.

Junior Megan Bolin sets the ball for a Cavalier spike. (Thomas Jackson)

Down two sets to zero, most teams would have played with a sense of defeat. However, the Cavs did not show that mentality. Between the second and third sets, senior captains Izzy Carter and Reagan Kruger gave very audible pep talks to their team. The seniors’ talks seemed to work, as the Cavs took their first lead of the night in the third set, going up four to three. The Wildcats, however, were able to quickly take the lead back en route to a 25 to 13 set win. 

Even with the three set loss, the Green and Gold had many reasons to hold their heads up high. This year’s team proved to be the most successful Clover Hill girls volleyball team, playoff-wise, in a decade. Not since the 2012 season, when they made the regional championship before losing three to zero versus Atlee, had a Cavaliers girls volleyball team made it so far in the regional playoffs.

Not only was the team fantastic in the playoffs, the Cavs saw outstanding play all season long from each and every player on the roster. Of those outstanding performances, the play of the two senior captains could not be overlooked. Not only tonight, where she contributed two kills, two assists and four digs, but all season long, Cavalier Chronicle Player of the Game Reagan Kruger produced beautiful spikes and fantastic digs for the Cavs. 

Junior Dani Couch goes down for a bump. (Thomas Jackson)

Additionally, aforementioned senior captain I. Carter also played terrifically all season long. Both of these seniors, as well as senior Kendra Weigand, who certainly did her part when called upon, will be severely missed next season. 

With the Cavalier season coming to an end last night, there is still a lot to look forward to. Thanks to great play from juniors this season, the girls volleyball team will surely be back and very competitive next year.