MILLTOWN — Saint Mark’s volleyball team remained the lone unbeaten in Delaware on Oct. 17, defeating Appoquinimink, 3-0. The big news for the evening came late in the first set, when Spartans senior Savannah Seemans celebrated a milestone moment.
With the score 19-13 in favor of Saint Mark’s, Brooke Dow received a serve, and Mya Lewis raced into the middle of the floor for the set. Seemans approached and, as she has done for the past three-plus seasons, smashed the ball deep and down the middle. The Jags’ Chantel Williams made a valiant attempt to stop the laser, but it went off her hands and into the stands.
The match was stopped for a minute so Seemans could celebrate her 1,000th career kill. Her sister Claudia, a 2014 Saint Mark’s graduate, presented her with flowers on the floor as their parents, Dale and Colleen, both 1987 alums, looked on. Seemans said she couldn’t have done any of this without them and her teammates, past and present. She was thrilled to have Claudia, a very good volleyball player for the Spartans in her own right, with her on the floor.
“It’s really nice having my sister there. She’s one of my biggest role models, and I’m so thankful for her,” Seemans said. “I knew my sister had 1,000 assists when she was in high school, so I always had a goal, but I never knew if it would actually happen. It’s just awesome that it really did.”
Seemans is still focused on what has to be done in 2019, but she allowed herself a second to think back on her career with Saint Mark’s.
“It feels like yesterday I was a freshman, and it’s just really crazy how fast time’s going,” she said.
There was no stopping the Spartans after the big moment. Set scores were 25-17, 25-14 and 25-13.
The first set ended on a monster kill by freshman Julia Yurkovich, followed by a big smash down the middle by Dow.
The Jaguars, who remain in the driver’s seat in Blue Hen Conference Flight A play, battled in the second set, finding themselves tied four times, the last at 11-11. Saint Mark’s was up, 5-2, only to see Appo knot the score at 6 when Alyssa White scored on a kill following a great save from Stefanie Savla.
Two Spartans hitting errors gave the Jags an 11-9 advantage, but then the comeback began. Saint Mark’s scored four straight to take a 13-11 lead, the last of those coming courtesy of Dow’s right arm. The set ended on two runs by the Spartans. The first was four points, making the score 17-12. The Jaguars scored twice, but the Spartans ran the table with eight straight. During that eight-point streak, Dow served up a trio of aces, Abby Thibodeau threw down a kill, and Seemans closed it out with a big spike.
Appo held a 3-2 lead in the final set thanks to Caroline Sherman’s kill, but Seemans scored on consecutive points after that. The Jags tied it one more time at 4, but back-to-back aces from Lewis put Saint Mark’s in front, 7-4. The margin was one, 13-12, after Jordan Hudson’s dink and a harder kill by Sherman. Another Sherman blast a few minutes later made the score 15-13 in favor of the Spartans, but that would be the Jags’ final point.
Serena Pluta scored on a block, and Dow added another ace. Lewis took it to match point with three consecutive aces, and Seemans — fittingly — ended the contest with her 18th and final kill.
Seemans also led Saint Mark’s with 11 digs. Yurkovich had 11 kills, and Lewis finished with six aces. The Spartans (13-0) finish the regular season next week with a pair against their Catholic rivals. They travel to Padua on Tuesday at 7:15 p.m., then host Ursuline next Saturday at 7:15 p.m. in the final schedule regular-season match in the state.
“We’re really excited to play (Padua) again. Just keep working hard and trying our best every day,” Seemans said.
White and Sherman each registered seven kills for the Jaguars, while Jillian Wyatt added six. Megan Aube had 16 digs. Appoquinimink (9-4) takes on Newark Charter on the road on Tuesday at 6:15 p.m., then wraps up the regular season next Friday at home ay 6:30 p.m. A win over St. Georges would give the Jags the Flight A championship and the automatic bid to the state tournament that goes with it.