CAPE ELIZABETH — The Falmouth High volleyball team received a stern test Monday night but remained undefeated.

Cape Elizabeth won two of the first three games and led deep into the fourth before the Yachtsmen, the defending Class A champions, rallied for a five-game victory.

“This was just what we really needed and wanted,” said Annika Hester, who had 26 kills for Falmouth. “We used teamwork and positivity to get through it.”

Falmouth (8-0), which has won 20 straight matches overall, trailed 18-16 in the fourth game, then went on a six-game run to win 25-19, and put the match away with a 15-7 victory in the fifth set.

Cape Elizabeth proved early it was up for the challenge, taking a 9-6 lead in the first game. Falmouth rattled off eight straight points, but even leading 19-14 the Yachtsmen couldn’t close out the Capers, who charged back to take a 24-23 lead on an Abi Bisceglie ace. Falmouth then got a kill from Katie Phillips and a block from Phillips before Cape Elizabeth failed to return a shot and the Yachtsmen escaped with a 26-24 victory.

The Capers (5-3) remained strong in the second set and pulled even thanks to a 25-17 win. Cape Elizabeth rode strong serving from Bisceglie and Aerin Manning, and put it away on a Bisceglie ace.

The Capers never trailed in the third game, when Corina Page’s setting and the defense of Julia Torre proved too much for Falmouth. Manning’s kill put the Yachtsmen behind in a match for the first time this year.

But Falmouth saved its best for last. Down two points in the fourth game, Hester had three kills and Hillary Bouchard’s serving kept Cape Elizabeth off balance.

“We felt confident going to the fifth set and used our momentum,” Hester said.

Falmouth trailed 2-1 after a service ace, then won 10 of the next 11 points with Hester proving unstoppable at the net. At match point, Rose Riversmith’s block ended it.

“(Cape) took every ball and made something happen with it,” said Falmouth Coach Larry Nichols. “That was just a tough match. We’re lucky to get out of here with a win. We held our breath and rode out the wave.”

Phillips had 17 assists, nine kills and five blocks, Riversmith added seven blocks and five kills, and Bouchard served 13 service points to go with 23 assists for the Yachtsmen.

The Capers suffered their second five-set loss in a week, also losing to Scarborough. Cape Elizabeth was paced by Page’s 30 assists and Bisceglie’s 21 service points.

“We had a great opportunity and we had them in our sights, but we made silly mistakes and that’s youth,” said Capers Coach Sarah Boeckel. “I’ve got one senior out there.

“This is a tough loss and Scarborough was a tough loss. We had those matches but they’re really good learning experiences for us.”


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