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Volleyball: Frederick continues upward charge with win over Skyline

Warriors win in four, earn win No. 10 in 2019

Frederick senior Gillian Ridgley battles Skyline ...
Brent W. New/
Frederick senior Gillian Ridgley battles Skyline senior Abby Stoops at the net

FREDERICK — With two sons that attend Skyline in attendance, Frederick volleyball coach Suzanne Robison didn’t mind spoiling their evenings.

“They brought their friends to root against me,” the third-year coach smiled.

Don’t mess with mom, fellas.

Whether it was sophomore Kinley Lindhardt dancing between sets, or senior Leilani Purcell closing the door with a strong service game, the Warriors’ four-set home victory over the Falcons Tuesday night seemed like another snapshot of a program charging upward.

“The growth (has been) huge,” Robison said.

Last fall, in Robison’s second year in charge, the program qualified for regionals for the first time since 2013. And this year, the Warriors have started the season 10-3 and now sit 2-1 in a staunch 4A Tri-Valley League.

Team chemistry appears to be a big reason for it.

“We’re all friends on this team,” Lindhardt said. “There’s no one on this team that I don’t like and there’s nobody on this team that doesn’t like each other. We’re all best friends on and off the court. Having that united team that feels like family, I think that’s what holds us together.”

Lindhardt certainly has been vital to the Warriors’ hot start — be it her dynamic play on the court or her boisterous antics she calls “swag”. She came into Tuesday leading the league in kills (112), and most likely in creative dance routines, too.

“There’s two rowdy crowds yelling at you and sometimes you need someone to just say ‘Hey bro’ and just tell you a joke or just tell you, ‘It’s OK, you’re fine’,” Lindhardt said. “And I just want to be that person. Like if Kinley says we’re good, we’re good. … Just swag.”

Brent W. New/
Frederick junior Abigail Awad goes for a dig Tuesday night against Skyline.

Purcell certainly has a bit of swag, too. The senior, who suffered a sprained ankle in a scrimmage right before the season, has been strong while slowly reintegrating herself back into the lineup.

Only listed on MaxPreps as having played 12 sets entering Tuesday, Purcell was crucial in the late stages. She had a finesse tip that nicked the line for a point late in the fourth set, and then all but sealed things with three straight aces immediately afterward.

“The team dynamic, the chemistry between all of us, is fantastic,” Purcell said. “One thing we do is called T.U.P. We’re tenacious, united and passionate.”

Skyline (7-2, 0-2) lost its second straight league game on the road, also falling at Fort Morgan on Sept. 26. Jenny Dunder had a number of thunderous kills in Tuesday’s loss, none greater than late in the second that helped the Falcons tie the match at 1-1.

Skyline hosts Holy Family Thursday, while Frederick is at Fort Morgan.