FREDERICK — If indeed winning breeds confidence, the Frederick volleyball team has been gaining it in bucketfuls ever since opening night of the 2017 season.
Beating an established Class 4A program like Thompson Valley — sweeping them, in fact — was just the remedy for a team that won three matches last year and had gone 8-38 the past two seasons combined.
On Tuesday night on their home floor, the Warriors wanted to prove they are ready to take the next step in their own Tri-Valley League, and that meant beating rival Mead for the first time since 2013.
With a counter-punch mentality, Frederick responded with 3-2 win to improve to 6-2 overall. The Warriors managed to win sets two and four before putting their foot down in set five, getting their second win in the TVL in impressive fashion.
"The positivity of this team has just carried us so far, and we're grateful to have each other and work together," senior Mylie Tarnowski said after the 22-25, 25-17, 20-25, 25-20, 15-6 victory. "We've wanted to turn things around so bad, and we've changed our perspective on the game this year. It's something to be proud of."
Frederick not only had lost the past seven meetings in the series, but it had won but one set that entire time. As soon as the first set on Tuesday, however, one could tell the Warriors brought to the court a different mindset entirely.
The Warriors were down 18-10 in the initial game and managed to tie things at 20-20 before Mead (2-5, 1-2 TVL) reeled off three kills to get the win. Again in set three, Frederick fell behind early only to rally down the stretch, and they carried that momentum into the early parts of set four to gain an overwhelming 20-13 lead after a Madison Zamudio ace.
In set five, the Warriors attack really went to work. Zamudio had two more aces in the first six points of the game, but kills from Gillian Ridgley, Bailey Baumgardner, Julia White and Paige Schaa took Frederick out to an 8-2 lead in the deciding game.
Tarnowski played well the entire match, but she was unstoppable down the stretch with four kills and a block among Frederick's final six points.
"I think people shouldn't look down on us any more, because we are ready to fight and ready to make playoffs," Tarnowski said. "We don't have a ton of height but we have a ton of power, and we work fast."
"This tonight was absolutely a team win, and they just hustled the entire night," head coach Suzanne Robison added. "It's two teams that are struggling to find their way, and we came out on top. This is a big win to prove to the girls that they have the ability."
Schaa and Ridgley each had 12 kills and White added 11 for Frederick, which will return to action Thursday against Holy Family.
Mead was led by Kenzi Morton's 11 kills.
Frederick 3, Mead 2
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