Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Sports

November 3, 2013

Lockport spikers produce historic victory

Whalen's Lions earn A finals berth with straight-set win over Clarence.

LOCKPORT —

If you’re looking for Lockport boys volleyball, it’s officially on the map.
Playing their best match of the season on Saturday, the gritty, high-flying Lions won all the big points, hit all the clutch shots and walked away with an impressive 25-22, 29-27, 25-11 straight-set victory over the visiting No. 3 Clarence Red Raiders in a Section VI Class A semifinal contest.
With the win — Lockport’s most important in program history — the No. 2-seeded Lions (21-3) advance to their first ever sectional title game at 6 p.m. Wednesday at Hamburg High School against No. 5 Frontier, 3-1 winners over top-seeded West Seneca West on Saturday.
“Lockport volleyball is on the map,” said Lions senior setter Jack Whalen. “We’ve been to the semifinals before, but this year we wanted more. We rode a lot of momentum today.”
Added LHS senior Brad Wroblewski, “I think this win says that Lockport volleyball is something to be scared of.”
The victory was a psychological one as a well for northern Niagara County schools and a sometimes ridiculed Niagara Frontier League that the Lions captured in undefeated fashion in 2013.
“Clarence coach Kevin Starr knows what kind of team we are because he’s coached some of our players in club before,” said Lions head coach Joe Whalen. “Sometimes there’s a misconception that if you’re a north towns school, you’re not at the same level as the south towns schools, but a half dozen of our kids have played with kids from the south towns schools since seventh grade. There’s no level of difference.”
Lockport senior Bryce Perry added, “The NFL’s no joke. The ECIC might have thought we were a joke in the past, but we’re not.”
Perry spiked home Lockport’s first point of the first set, and the Lions’ senior contingent, especially Jonah Ribbeck, produced some clutch points, but it was juniors Jason Donorovich and Brad Schneider who delivered the most blows with some heavy duty smashes at the net as the Lions cruised through the opening set.

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