At quick glance, the serves of Robinson junior Savanna Love don't seem like anything special. But it became apparent in the Rams' three-game sweep of T.C. Williams last night that picking up Love's floating serves can be a deceptively daunting task.
Love, the Rams' setter and a team captain, had 15 aces and sparked a 25-16, 25-15, 25-20 win over the visiting Titans in Burke.
"My floater has always been a strong point," Love said. "It can confuse [the other team] sometimes when it gets air under it."
Love added 15 assists and three kills for the Rams (4-1), who rebounded with the Virginia AAA Patriot District victory a day after losing a nondistrict matchup against Chantilly.
Love was the center of the Rams' offense, distributing her passes among several hitters. Eight Rams had kills, including a game-high six by senior Allison Brown, and four apiece by senior Sanna Barrineau and junior Lizzie O'Connor.
Robinson only trailed for one point during the entire match.
"She has a lot of options," Robinson Coach Jill Pearson said of Love. "Everyone is part of the attack, we have a lot of athletic hitters. That helps a lot."
As strong as Love's passing was, several long stretches of her tough serving proved to be the difference in all three games.
In the first game, Love had three straight aces as part of a six-point run that gave the Rams an 18-10 lead. In the second game, T.C. Williams tied the game at 10 before a bad serve returned the ball to the Rams, with Love regaining the serve. She served 10 straight points, including six aces, and the score was 21-10 before the Titans got a point. In the third game, Love scored six more aces as the Rams jumped to an 8-0 lead.
"She is our most consistent server," Pearson said. "She's very accurate -- she can get the ball down in any zone."
T.C. Williams battled back to take its only lead at 15-14 in the third game, but an ace by senior Lisa Borcheller and three kills by Barrineau allowed the Rams to pull away.
"It's tough to have to come back the day after a loss like we had to," Pearson said. "But it was nice to get this win and move on."