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Torrington volleyball sweeps Granby Memorial. Remarkable campaign (19-1) enters second season.

POSTED October 28, 2016
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

TORRINGTON: There is no question that this is Raiders volleyball campaign is going to go down as one of the greatest in the history of the school’s program and it is far from over.

On Thursday night, Torrington vanquished the only foe who dared to hang a loss on them in 2016, the Granby Memorial Bears, who had beaten the Raiders 3-2 earlier this year in a match the Raiders felt they had.

So as payback, the Raiders traveled to Granby and came away with a sweep, not leaving anything to chance by winning close games, 25-18, 25-20 and 26-24.

Torrington finishes the year with a 19-1 mark, their best record since finishing 17-1 back during the 2008/2009 school year.

That record is tied for the top spot in Class M with Haddam-Killingworth but Torrington will be the top seed come state tournament time based on a tie breaker.

First things first though. The Naugatuck Valley League Tournament begins on Saturday with the Raiders (#1, 17-0) hosting St Paul (#8 seed, 6-10) at 2 p.m. at the Connie Donahue Gymnasium.

Winning the NVL regular season title with a 17-0 mark (they lost just three league games all season) was nice but this teams goals are much, much higher.

Playing and sweeping a team like the Bears, who won the Class M title two years ago, was a terrific way for the Raiders to end the regular season.

The loss to the Bears stung, remember Torrington was one point away from taking the match at 14-10 before Granby Memorial stormed back for the win, and so taking the rematch was only appropriate for this squad.

What was the difference between match one and match two?

Head coach Christine Gamari talked about her team preparedness.

“We were just super-focused and executed the game plan/strategy that we had,” Gamari said. “We tried to put them in tough passing positions so they would get out of an offensive rhythm. We had great performances from Jayleen (Colon), Carissa (Carbone), and strong defensive plays from Carissa, Ali (Dubois) and Candyce (Jewett). Jolie (Fox) had three pivotal blocks tonight at the net at big points. Nina Lestrud did a great job serving tonight too.  As usual, a total team effort. We tried to stay upbeat, energetic and together and we did a great job of doing that.”

The Raiders have bought into what Gamari is preaching in a big way and the coach appreciates the effort. “I am so proud of my team and the growth we have shown over the course of the season.” Gamari said. “I hope we keep playing hard and coming ready to play every match like we did tonight.”

Torrington 3, Granby Memorial 0 25-18 , 25-20, 26-24 T: Jayleen Colon 21 assists, 1 kills, 6 digs; Carissa Carbone 11 kill, 16 digs; Candyce Jewett 7 digs, 1 ace; Ali DuBois 2 kills, 4 digs, 2 aces; Jolie Fox 4 kills, 3 blocks, 2 digs; G: Cailin Tennis 16 assists Records: Torrington 19-1, Granby 15-4

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