The Poolesville volleyball team's season ended Wednesday night just as it had in each of the previous two years: with a loss to Williamsport.
Two-time defending Maryland 1A champion Williamsport posted a 25-22, 25-22, 19-25, 25-23 victory over Poolesville in a state semifinal match at the Community College of Baltimore County-Essex in a rematch of each of the previous two state finals.
Williamsport (17-1) advanced to the state final on Saturday at 5 p.m. at the University of Maryland's Ritchie Coliseum, where it will try to claim its state public school- record 11th title. The Wildcats will face the winner of Wednesday night's other semifinal between Loch Raven and Elkton.
Poolesville, which was led by senior setter Maureen DuVall's team-high eight kills, finished the season 14-3.
"When you have two great teams, someone has got to lose, and that's what people saw," said Poolesville Coach Fran DuVall, whose team came into the match on a six-game winning streak. "To win a match like this, you have to have some luck, and the only luck we had was bad luck."
After Williamsport won the first game, 25-22, it appeared Poolesville was going to tie the match by jumping out to a 16-9 lead in the second game. However, Williamsport rallied by going on a 16-6 run to take the game 25-22 and a commanding two-game lead.
Poolesville avoided being shut out by winning the third game, 25-19, but squandered a 17-15 lead in the fourth game as the Wildcats closed out the match.
"We came back and came up big in that third game, so it was disappointing that we couldn't come back all the way," said Maureen DuVall, Fran's daughter. "I thought we played the best we could."