Fort Frye Cadets fall to Dalton in district final

Fort Frye’s Jordyn Hendershot sets the ball for her teammates during Wednesday’s Division IV regional semifinal volleyball match at Lake High School in Uniontown. Photo courtesy of Tom Camden.

UNIONTOWN — Sweet 16 was anything but as the Fort Frye volleyball team was swept 3-0 by Dalton in an OHSAA Division IV, Region 13 semifinal at Lake High Wednesday night.

The Cadets dropped 25-18, 25-10 and 25-16 decisions to the Bulldogs.

“As tough as tonight was, they really were a great team,” FFHS coach Tiffany Schob. “They had some pretty solid servers and had some good runs there. And, they had some other strong hitters, too.”

But Dalton’s primary hitter was 6-foot-3 senior Emma Granger, who finished with 19 kills.

“Just her size and when you see her hit, they might’ve been intimidated a little bit,” said Dalton boss Allison Hostetler of her West Virginia University recruit. “But Fort Frye did a good job, going out there playing.”

FFHS finished with a combined 14 blocks with a few coming against Granger. Alissa Ginther and Kasey Buchanan each had four blocks, while Kelsey Adkins, Emily Smith, and Jade Baker had two apiece.

“We did have some strong blocks,” Schob said.

Fort setter Jordyn Hendershot and Buchanan each had four kills to lead their team in that statistical category. Libero Gabby Baker finished with eight digs and Adkins had seven points.

Hendershot also had four assists.

Fort Frye exits with an 18-8 overall record while Dalton advances to Saturday regional final against either St. John School or St. Thomas Acquinas.

Bulldog setter Lauran Hicks had a match-high 25 assists, nine points and three aces. Kirsten Shoup added seven kills, 13 points, 11 digs, and six aces, while Kelsey Shoup had 10 digs.

After Granger led off the opening set with a kill, Dalton never trailed, and won by seven points.

In the second game, the Bulldogs jumped out to an 8-0 advantage and never looked back. During the game, FFHS senior hitter Kelsey Sampson, who finished with three points and two aces, was injured and had to be assisted off the court. She did not return as the Cadets were routed by 15 points.

“That always hurts a team when you lose one of your main players,” Hostetler said.

Said Schob, “That kind of threw a curveball at us, because we had to replace Kelsey in the middle of  a game. It was hard to make adjustments in that game.”

In what turned out to be the final set, the Cadets took their first lead of the match early on, but couldn’t hold it. Still, they managed to hang tough with the Bulldogs until they dropped off the pace and lost by nine.

“We knew they were going to give it to us,” Hostetler said. “I mean, that was their chance right there, but we were able to keep the tempo of the game and went on to win.

“The girls really have stepped up in the past couple of games in the tournament. It seems like we’re peaking right now. What more can you ask for, going on a tournament run. They’re doing really well.”

Sampson, Hendershot, and Wagner, all seniors, played their last volleyball match as a members of the Fort Frye varsity.

“I’m so proud of all my girls for getting to this point,” Schob said. “They fought for every ball, even in situations that they weren’t used to, in situations where they’re kind of scrambling and trying to figure things out on the go.

“That just goes to show the character of the girls. They all represented Fort Frye well.”