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The Key West Citizen

Palm Beach Central wins Conch Cup, while Lady Conchs place third at home

By By J.W. COOKE Keys Citizen,


In order to maximize the number of opponents the Key West High volleyball team would face this season, Lady Conchs coach Sarah Eckert loaded up on tournaments that she knew would challenge her program to play at a higher level. In fact, of the first eight matches of the season, only one was a single match against Monroe County rival Marathon High, leading Key West into its annual home tournament, the Conch Cup, on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 15-16, at the Bobby Menendez Gymnasium.

Five teams were in action during the two days, including Marathon, as well as state powerhouse Palm Beach Central, which would go on to claim the tournament title, starting the event with a 2-0 (25-19, 25-15) victory against Key West. It turned out to be a rough first day of matches for Key West (3-8 overall record), also losing 2-0 (25-18, 25-11) to South Fork (7-10 overall), but the Conchs rebounded on Saturday with a 2-0 (25-12, 25-8) victory against Marathon (1-9) and 2-0 (2-19, 25-15) versus Suncoast (2-10) to place third in their home event.

Marathon and Suncoast played a tight first game in its match, but the Lady ‘Fins ended up losing 2-0 (25-14, 25-15) to take fifth out of the five teams, also losing 2-0 (25- 17, 25-12) to Palm Beach Central and 2-0 (25-16, 25-13) to South Fork.

The championship was decided between South Fork and Palm Beach Central, both of which did not lose a game through the third three matches. They would each take a first-game loss as the squads traded 25-20 wins before PBC went onto the title with a 15-10 victory.

The high-paced tournament schedule will continue for Key West, as after a match on Tuesday, Sept. 19, at 6:30 p.m. against Coral Shores in Tavernier, the Lady Conchs will enter the Chaminade Madonna Tournament on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 22-23, followed by the Varsity Florida Christian Tournament on Friday and Saturday, Sept. 29-30. Marathon will host Somerset Silver Palm at 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 19, and head to Westwood Christian on Friday, Sept. 22, for a 6 p.m. match.

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