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Falcons volleyball team falls at Meridian

"Kaitlin King and a teammate go to their knees for a dig in a volleyball match earlier this season. The Falcons lost to Meridian Tuesday on the road in a three-game match.Matt Johnson / staff photoThe race for the playoffs is getting tighter for the South Whidbey Falcons volleyball team.Playing at Meridian Tuesday night, the Falcons suffered a tough, midseason loss to the Trojans, falling in three long games.Now 3-2 in the North Cascades Conference and a half-game out of third place, South Whidbey's players are hoping to pick up three more wins before season's end.Coach Tim Durbin said the Falcons played a tight match against Meridian despite the score. In the 10-15, 4-15, 12-15 match, the Falcons fell victim to the Trojans' powerful outside hitting. Even when they were able to build a 12-9 in the third game, Meridian's hitters were too big and fast to allow the Falcons stay on top for long.Meridian is just really tough, he said.But there were a number of aspects of the game that let Durbin know his team is playing well. First, the team's servers made 52 of 53 serves, a fine percentage at any level. Once the ball was in play, senior setter Erin Hussey came up with 14 assists, while Jenny Saephan and Melissa Poolman combined for 13 kills. Jamie Nelson was the team's saver, going low for six digs during the match.On Saturday, the junior varsity Falcons played their longest day of the season at their own home invitational. Powered by Brianna Hussey's five aces and Katie McGillen's ten kills, the team place sixth out of eight teams, winning one match against North Kitsap. Coach Durbin said he was impressed with the JV's play, especially since the team put up solid games with sophomore hitter Kate Willis on the sidelines.The varsity and junior varsity Falcons play next on Tuesday in a home contest against Lynden Christian. The JV plays at 5:45 p.m. while the varsity plays at 7 p.m. "

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