MARTINSVILLE — The Avon Orioles (32-5) volleyball team had not been pushed to five sets in any contest this year.
Until last night.
And the Orioles could not have picked a better time than to win their first five set match of the season, snatching a victory right from the jaws of defeat.
Avon fell behind 1-2 to the host Martinsville Artesians in the one-game regional, but rallied back and showed great resiliency in its 3-2 (25-15, 19-25, 22-25, 25-22, 15-10) victory, taking a third consecutive regional title.
“If you are going to be 1-0 in a five set match, this was the time to do it,” Avon coach Scott McQueen said. “I’m really proud of them. I don’t think anyone ever thought we were definitely losing. We had a shot and just kept plugging away and I thought the kids fought the whole time.”
Avon had defeated Martinsville earlier in the year and the Artesians pointed to this game as one they were looking forward to after falling to the Orioles a year ago in the regional round.
“It’s a weird match for me as it’s my hometown and I get the newspaper articles about them wanting to play us again and how they should have won the first time around,” McQueen said. “It is something they geared their season to all year long. This is how it’s been all season for us and we just have had to learn how to deal with it and how to preserver through it.”
Avon came out fast and really took it to a Martinsville team that looked very flat early on. The Orioles jumped out to an 11-0 run before the Artesians scored a single point. Besides a five-point run in the middle of the set, Martinsville could not get anything going.
“When we were up 10-0 and Martinsville took its timeout, I told them it would not be that easy all match,” McQueen said.