Volleyball scrapped its way into the NJSIAA Group 1 sectional finals but they couldn’t tame the Kinnelon Colts: Verona High School fell to Kinnelon on Wednesday 25-12, 25-14.
Wednesday’s game was the fourth straight sectional finals for VHS, and this year’s squad had an admirable 21-8 record overall going into it. Verona easily defeated Becton in the playoff opener, and similarly dispatched Hasbrouck Heights in the next round. That win put the #6 seeded Lady Hillbillies up against #3 Wood-Ridge, and several sports pundits predicted a Verona loss. Instead, VHS came up with a huge 28-26, 26-24 upset.
But Kinnelon was the #2 seed and they had a 21-6 record overall before Wednesday. The Colts dominated the game from the outset, running the scoring to 5-0 before Verona called their first time out. While Verona did begin to get some points, Kinnelon’s strong blocking and spiking enabled that team to keep widening their lead. Kinnelon then stayed strong in the second game to win its first sectional title ever. The Colts will face #1 Bogota, Verona’s chief volleyball rival of recent years, on Saturday. Bogota has the stronger record, but they had to battle to defeat Midland Park on Wednesday.
The loss was the last VHS game for Sofia Fiorita, Sloane Lawless and Kelly Waterman, who capped her high school career with more than 1,000 career assists.