(Please note: Currently, BHS Girls Varsity Volleyball has 18 state titles)
A phenomenal run
With 19 state titles, Turco's Red Raiders top state's female sports teams
Make no bones about it, one of the most difficult things for any athletic team to do is to capture a state championship.
Regardless how successful a team may be during the regular season, winning a title as the best team in the state is a much soughtafter goal by each team that takes to the playing arena.
Case in point – the Barnstable girls’ volleyball team, which ran the table with 23 consecutive victories during the regular season and playoffs, and did not drop a single set throughout the run.
However, the Red Raiders saw their only blemish come in the state Division 1 finals, when they fell Nov. 17 to nemesis Newton North, 3-1. They were topped by the Tigers 25-21, 25-17, 20-25, 27-25.
It has been a truly phenomenal run for Coach Tom Turco’s team over the past 25 years, a dynasty program that has seen the Red Raiders win a total of 19 state titles – the most by any female sports team in the history of the state.
“It was an amazing experience just to reach that point,” said Red Raider cocaptain Riley James. “It was our goal all year to win a state championship, and although it didn’t happen, I’m really proud of the way we played.”
Fellow co-captain Ingrid Murphy agreed.
“I’m obviously sad about (the loss), but our team put our hearts out on the court,” she said. “It’s hard to lose, but we’ve accomplished a lot of great things in my four years here.”
For many years, I had the good fortune to follow the Gardner High girls’ swimming program during their phenomenal run of 15 state championships, including 11 consecutive between 1994 and 2004.
During that dynasty run, Gardner coach Don Lemieux always talked about how much people took for granted that his program would simply show up and automatically be expected to capture the state meet. He said that it would have been more newsworthy to be defeated for the state title than to capture it year in and year out.
“It’s a game of pressure,” said Turco earlier this season. “There are pressure situations, and we’ve trained them for those situations. All you can do it set your goals and work to achieve those goals.”
While Barnstable faced a Newton North team it had beaten earlier in the season on September 17 by a score of 3-0, the Tigers were without 6-2 senior libero and Harvard-bound Ashley Wang, who missed the regular season match with a foot injury. Junior hitter Lisa Halloran was also missing from the initial match.
Wang had 20 kills on Saturday, while Halloran was also back at full strength as the Tigers captured their second straight state Division 1 championship and third in five years.
Despite the loss in the championship match, Barnstable still ranks as the most successful girls’ team in state history in terms of state championships, as this list of all sports and the all-time champions by sport notes:
Most Mass. State Titles, by Sport Title and School
20 Boys Swimming Weston
19 Boys Lacrosse Longmeadow
18 Girls Volleyball Barnstable
18 Field Hockey Watertown
17 Boys Hockey Catholic Memorial
15 Girls Swimming Gardner
15 Girls Tennis Concord Carlisle
14 Boys Basketball Durfee
13 Girls Golf Notre Dame (Hingham)
13 Boys Track Boston English
12 Football Leominster, Longmeadow
10 Boys Soccer Ludlow
9 Boys Tennis Winchester
9 Boys Track Andover
8 Boys Cross Country Brockton
8 Boys Golf St. John’s Prep
8 Girls Lacrosse Norwell
8 Softball Bishop Fenwick
7 Girls Basketball Lee
7 Girls Cross Country Amherst-Pelham, Falmouth
7 Girls Soccer Sutton
7 Girls Track Falmouth
5 Baseball Somerville
5 Girls Hockey St. Mary’s (Lynn)
Red Raiders fall to Tigers in D1 final
WORCESTER — Tears streamed down the faces of Riley James, Ingrid Murphy and their Barnstable High School girls volleyball teammates.
The Red Raiders had to watch Newton North deny them a state championship for the second consecutive year.
James fired a game-high 29 kills, but the Tigers prevailed 25-21, 25-17, 20-25, 27-25 in the MIAA Division 1 state championship match Saturday at Worcester State University.
Barnstable (23-1) lost to Newton North (17-2) for the second straight year, falling last year in the state semifinals. The Red Raiders came into both state tournament games against the Tigers undefeated, including regular-season wins over Newton North squads that didn’t have Harvard-commit Ashley Wang (20 kills) due to injury.
“It was hard fought, two very good teams,” said Barnstable coach Tom Turco. “The regular season doesn’t mean anything. This means something.”
The loss meant the end of varsity volleyball for seniors James, Ingrid Murphy, Madelyn Murphy and Oliva Berler.
James will graduate with 1,729 kills, the most in Massachusetts history. She’ll play for Division I Bryant University next year.
“Some of the best volleyball players I’ve had,” Turco said of his seniors. “Those four held the course, and they never wavered in their beliefs or their examples. They’re terrific captains, and I’m proud of them.”
Barnstable couldn’t score more than two points in a row through the first two sets — the first sets Barnstable lost all season — and looked in danger of getting swept when back-to-back aces by Chelsea Simmons made it 13-6 Newton North in the third. James ended the run with a kill, then added three more in a 9-0 run to retake the lead.
Wang’s kill regained the lead at 16-15, but Barnstable had the momentum. Murphy (18 kills, 29 digs) closed out the set with four of the final six points, keeping alive Barnstable’s dreams of a state title.
“The third set, we knew that we could definitely win this,” said Murphy, bound for Division II Bentley University.
“There’s no other way I could’ve gone through four years of volleyball. ... I can’t ask for better teams, better family than those girls.”
James led the Red Raiders on another long run in the fourth set to go up 15-11, but three kills by Wang tied the game. Barnstable had the lead multiple times down the stretch, going up 24-23 on James’ ace, but couldn’t send the match to a fifth set.
Wang’s last kill gave Newton North a 26-25 lead, and on the next point Lauren Ogonowsky was whistled for a double touch trying to set the ball over the net to end the match.
“We definitely didn’t come out the way we wanted to,” James said. “Obviously dropping the first two sets, that’s hard to come back from. “I’m just so thankful for this program and every opportunity I’ve gotten.
I’m just so grateful, and I’m really going to miss it.”
Unbeaten Barnstable faces rival Newton North in volleyball state championship match
Here we go again.
For the third straight season, the Barnstable High School girls volleyball team will meet longtime rival North Newton, the defending state champion, in the Division 1 state tournament.
Just like 2012, 2013 and 2016, the teams meet in the finals, set for 7 p.m. tonight at Worcester State University.
“It’s going to be a heavyweight battle,” said 31-year Barnstable coach Tom Turco, whose squads have won 18 state championships since 1993 and last went undefeated in 2013.
“There’s nothing like it in the world. Each year is special.”
Just like watching the underdog sports movie “Hoosiers,” which Barnstable does on the bus ride each time they play for a state championship, this is nothing new for the Red Raiders.
Barnstable (23-0) and Newton North (16-2) have met in the state tournament six of the last seven years, with Barnstable winning each time they’ve met in the finals. Newton North, however, beat Barnstable in the state semis in 2014 and 2017.
The Red Raiders are one of four Cape teams playing for state championships today on a rather historic day. Bourne’s volleyball team plays Whitinsville Christian for a state title at 2 p.m. at WPI. Just down the road at Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Dennis-Yarmouth’s unbeaten field hockey team plays Greenfield for a state title. And Nauset’s boys soccer team, also unbeaten, faces Arlington in an EMass championship game at Xaverian High School in Westwood.
Barnstable and Newton North also played in the 2006 girls volleyball finals when Barnstable won the state title without losing a set. This year’s squad has a chance to do the same thing. The teams met twice earlier this season, with Barnstable winning at Newton North, 3-0, exactly two months ago.
The teams also met at the VolleyHall Classic, which Barnstable also won.
“It’s been a good rivalry the past couple years,” said Barnstable senior outside hitter Riley James, who has signed a National Letter of Intent with NCAA Division I Bryant. “It brings out the most energy we have.”
James leads the Red Raiders with 5.9 kills per set (406 total), but has always been complimented by fellow senior captain Ingrid Murphy, who has 3.9 kills per game (271 total) and has announced she is going to D2 Bentley University.
Add in junior defensive specialist Josie Deluga, a transfer from D-Y, freshman setter Teagan James and solid serving from players like senior captain Madelyn Murphy, the Barnstable offense has a potent attack that has been able to offset early deficits.
Most recently, the Red Raiders overcame a 22-18 deficit in the third set to finish off Franklin in the state semifinals. Barnstable trailed by similar deficits in last year’s 25-16, 25-22, 25-22 loss to Newton North, but this year has shown its ability to rally.
“It’s nice to know we can work together at the last minute and bring up the energy,” James said.
Under longtime coach Richard Barton, Newton North packs a powerful punch with 6-foot-2 senior Ashley Wang, a SMASH club teammate with Riley James. Wang, who had 14 kills, 14 assists and three blocks against Barnstable last year, played libero in the regular season matchup when she was recovering from foot injuries. Junior hitter Liisa Halloran was out.
Both will be in their normal spots tonight, joined by senior hitter Erin Carey and four-year starter Chelsea Simmons, who provides solid setting and defense.
“They attack all areas of the court,” Turco said of Newton North, which beat Lawrence, 3-1, in its semifinal. “They have a good program, talented players.”
James and Wang saw each other at Thursday’s MIAA championship breakfast at Worcester State, but didn’t really interact. Instead, the captains soaked in the sights from the arena where the teams will go head-to-head.
“It was really a great gym, and I think it’ll be a great atmosphere to play in Saturday,” James said.
Though Barnstable gets the late game, the suspense, which has been building for Barnstable since last season’s elimination, is finally about to be lifted.
“We’ve been waiting since last year,” said Sophie Strock, Barnstable’s sophomore middle hitter. “The standards are higher, and we just have to bring it on home.”
Déjà vu for Raiders Volleyball
Barnstable vs. Newton North in State Final Nov. 17
Pursuit of perfection.
That is the journey the Barnstable girls’ volleyball team is on.
The Red Raiders made it back to the state championship game for the 20th time in its history and will go for state title No. 19 on Saturday against Newton North at Worcester State University.
Newton North defeated Lawrence in the other state semifinal game, 3-1.
Barnstable made sure of the return trip with a 3-0 victory over previously undefeated Central/West champion Franklin on Tuesday night in a match that was a lot closer than the final score indicated.
While the Red Raiders captured the first two sets 25-17 and 25-22, they were down 22-18 on Franklin’s home court in the final set before coach Tom Turco called a strategic time out.
A raucous home crowd was roaring for a Franklin team comeback during the huddle.
“He just said, ‘this is your match,’ you take control,’” said team co-captain Madelyn Murphy of Turco’s message during the time out.
“There is a lot of momentum in a game like this that really makes a difference,” she added. “It’s those tough moments when you pick up the momentum that it will turn out in your favor.”
Barnstable went on to score seven of the final eight points of the set to win 25-23 and capture their 69th straight set without a loss this season. The last time Barnstable won every set in one season came during the 2006 state championship run.
“It was a little tense at that moment, so we just said we had to turn it around,” said senior co-captain Ingrid Murphy. “The team did a great job of getting back into the swing of things.”
“Obviously, our goal is to win every point we can,” said senior co-captain Riley James. “We’re always thinking about our number one goal, which is to go all the way.”
The Red Raiders were also well aware that their season ended last year in the state semifinals against nemesis Newton North.
“It was in the back of our minds a little bit,” said James. “We knew that this was where our season ended last year, so we said, ‘let’s do this.’” “Going into this game, we knew that this was where it ended last year,” Ingrid Murphy added. “We said that’s not happening again. It was a big motivator for our team.”
James led the team with 24 kills and six digs, while Ingrid Murphy added 16 kills and a team-high 19 digs. Junior Josie Deluga had 10 digs, and Madelyn Murphy served up three aces.
The team also got some inspired play from freshman Teagan James (four kills, two digs), Dorian Funk, Olivia Berler, Emily Mulcahy, Lauren Ognowsky, Shea Johnson and Sophie Strock.
“They work hard and they kept their composure, and I’m really proud of them,” said Turco. “That’s who they are. They just try to figure things out. There was no panic, they just found a way.”
So, it will all come down, once again, to Barnstable against Newton North for the Division 1 state title.
Barnstable defeated Newton North earlier this season on Sept. 17 by a score of 3-0.
Newton North won the state title last year, while Barnstable defeated them for the 2016 state championship, as well as in 2000, 2006, 2012 and 2013.
In other playoff games and meets this past week: Volleyball Nov. 10: Barnstable 3 – New Bedford 0. The Red Raiders won their ninth consecutive Division 1 South Sectional title and 24th overall with the three-set victory over the Whalers. Actually, New Bedford was the last team to beat Barnstable in a sectional final back in 2009, stopping their earlier streak at 14 consecutive titles. Top-seeded Barnstable won in three-straight sets, 25-3, 25-8, 25-14, to sweep No. 2 New Bedford at Silver Lake Regional High School. Riley James (24 kills), Ingrid Murphy (six aces, nine kills), and Teagan James (8 aces) led the team.
Barnstable 3, Franklin 0
Red Raiders sweep way to state title game
FRANKLIN — State championship No. 19 is within reach.
Now Barnstable’s girls volleyball team will be able to do something it hasn’t done in over a decade: win it all without losing a set all season.
Barnstable beat a previously unbeaten Franklin squad, 25-17, 25-22, 25-23, in Tuesday night’s Division 1 state semifinals inside a jam-packed Franklin High School gymnasium. If the Red Raiders (23-0) don’t lose a set in Saturday’s state final, that will be the first time since 2006 that Barnstable has won a state title and never lost a set.
Perhaps more important, the Red Raiders are back in the state finals after losing at the state semifinals last year.
“We’re so happy we made it past that,” said Barnstable senior outside hitter Ingrid Murphy, who finished with 16 kills and 19 digs.
And now there’s a score to be settled: the latest chapter of the Barnstable vs. Newton North rivalry.
After being swept by defending state champ Newton North in last year’s state semifinals,
Barnstable will meet the Tigers, a 3-1 winner over Lawrence in their semifinal, in a rematch Saturday at Worcester State University. Barnstable beat Newton North to win the state title in 2013 and 2016, but this is a rematch that senior outside hitter Riley James and the remaining seniors said they’ve been itching for ever since Nov. 15, 2017.
“This team really wants it,” said Barnstable coach Tom Turco, whose team won at Newton North in the regular season. “They come into the season thinking about that last loss. That’s the thing that’s been fueling them all year.”
First, there was the challenge of beating a Panthers squad led by nine seniors. They came the closest to beating the Red Raiders in a set all season — twice, in fact — but the Red Raiders took advantage of Franklin’s service and passing errors, turning a 22-18 deficit in the last set into a 25-23 victory to end it.
“We haven’t been pressed like that,” Turco said. “They kept their composure, and I’m proud of them.”
“When we had the lead, we got comfortable, and you can’t get comfortable against a team like this,” added Franklin coach Kelsey Weymouth.
The Red Raiders started quickly by going to their all-star Riley James, who matched her season-high of 24 kills, including 10 in the first set. Her last kill, which got deflected into the stands, ended it.
“The goal mentality was go out on the attack and go all the way,” said James, an NCAA Div. 1 verbal commit to Bryant University, who holds the state record in total varsity kills. “I think we came out excited and motivating this was a very big game for us.”
Franklin got well-placed, powerful kills from senior captain Margaret Doyle, and though James’ kills mainly powered the offense, Murphy kept plays alive and had key points on kills down the line.
“That was the rotation where we started picking things up,” Turco said. “She just buried the ball down the line. That was a momentum changer.”
Junior libero Josie Deluga (10 digs) was solid on serve receive, but freshman setter Teagan James helped reset the offense when Franklin would get on a run.
Teagan had 46 assists, and had several well-placed reverse shots that led to key points.
“My setter is 14 and she played like she’s 18,” Turco said of Teagan.
Turco also praised his team for its mental toughness, facing the unusual situation of playing a state semifinal in an opponent’s gym.
Turco said he told the team, “You’re going to be stronger mentally leaving this building than you were coming into this building. It is unprecedented, but we’ll play anybody, anywhere, anytime.”
For all the high school volleyball Murphy and fellow seniors Madelyn Murphy (4 aces) and Olivia Berler, and Riley James have played, now there’s just one game remaining regardless.
“Our seniors this year want it more than ever,” Riley James said. “It’s sinking in a little bit that it’s our last game anyway. We’re just going to go out and play as hard as we can and leave it all out on the court.”
Red Raiders sweep Whalers, Leao for South championship
The best hitter in the state can only attack when her team is able to properly set her. Barnstable’s dominant servers so overwhelmed New Bedford that the Whalers and leading hitter Janice Leao could only watch the Red Raiders cruise back into the state semifinals. Teagan James matched a season-best with eight aces, older sister Riley James added 24 more kills to her state-record career total, and No. 1 Barnstable won its 24th Division 1 South Sectional title with a 25-3, 25-8, 25-14 sweep of No. 2 New Bedford on Saturday at Silver Lake Regional High School.
"We just served our game,” said Barnstable coach Tom Turco. “We had to keep them basically out of system, and that’s what we did.”
Barnstable (22-0), which still hasn’t dropped a set this season, will face West champion Franklin in the state semifinals Tuesday. Franklin beat Shrewsbury in five sets to advance.
“We have to accomplish this before we can accomplish anything else,” said Turco, who is looking for his 19th state title and first since 2016.
New Bedford (20-2) came into the game with the state leader in kills in Leao, a 6-foot-3 senior middle hitter verbally committed to Division I University of Miami. Leao put her power on display in warm-ups, but her team couldn’t consistently get her the ball.
Barnstable’s service game finished with 19 aces and left the Whalers staring at balls frequently drilling the sidelines or dying in the middle of the court.
They have really big attackers, and we wanted to keep them out of system as much as possible so they can’t run that middle (Leao),” said Riley James, who added three aces. “That definitely was our goal, to come out swinging and get them out of system, and I think we really executed that well and that kind of set the tone for the rest of the way.”
Ingrid Murphy (six aces, nine kills) opened the first set with an ace, her jump-serves often floating in the air and ricocheting off Whalers passers and out of bounds. She added two more aces and Riley James had three kills in an initial 6-0 run, then Teagan James seized control with seven straight jump-serves, acing the last two to go up 14-1.
“We knew we had to serve aggressive,” said Teagan, who also recorded 33 assists as the team’s starting setter. “I was really nervous coming in, but once you get in the rhythm it’s a lot easier.”
Teagan finished with eight aces for the second time this season including an Oct. 17 win against Notre Dame Academy. She dropped in four aces in the final 9-0 run of the second set, with Riley James adding two kills.
Leao had just two kills and an ace through the first two sets. New Bedford too often had to settle for free balls bumped over the net or sets too far off back for her to hit with power.
She came alive with nine kills in the third, but even that was never enough to give the Whalers a bigger lead than 3-1 early in the set. Kills by Murphy and Riley James, a Division I Bryant University commit with 1,676 career kills, helped Barnstable keep pace throughout the third, then Murphy and Teagan James took control at the service line.
Two aces by Murphy made it 21-15 Barnstable before Teagan snuck a kill over the net out of the setter’s spot to make it match point.
Teagan’s final serve drifted between two Whalers and led to another shanked pass, sending Barnstable back to the state semifinals for the ninth consecutive year.
“We didn’t serve-receive well at all,” said New Bedford coach Neil Macedo. “Once they got way ahead, there was kind of no stopping them."
State record holder Riley James does it all for Barnstable
Source: Ron Schloerb, Cape Cod Times
A moment often occurs when Riley James goes up to hit. James, a four-year starting outside hitter for the Barnstable girls volleyball team, hangs suspended in the air, her arm raised above her ready to strike and the entire opposing court open beneath.
Then James smashes through the ball, snapping it down with so much force that it’s on the floor before the defense can even react.
James heads into today’s Division 1 South championship having done this more times than anyone in Massachusetts history.
“She is just so consistent with taking pretty much any kind of set she gets and finding ways to generate a lot of power and velocity,” said Konst Dimov, who is James’ club coach at Smash Volleyball.
It took James a few tries to discover the sport she now plays year-round.
She grew up in Bourne playing soccer, softball and basketball, and didn’t start local volleyball clinics until she was in the third grade. She joined her first club team, Pilgrim Volleyball, a year later and has been playing ever since.
“It’s not a contact sport,” James said. “When I was younger, it was kind of nice that it’s your own side of the court and you don’t have to be all physical with the opponent like in basketball and soccer.”
The sport quickly became a family activity in the James household. James’ mother, Merry, played for Bishop Feehan High School in Attleboro — Barnstable head coach Tom Turco coached against her in his first year in 1988 — and the death of Pilgrim’s under-12 coach at the time led to her taking over her daughter’s club team.
“We just spent hours in the backyard playing pepper, and she just loved that one-on-one,” Merry said. “The hours she spent in the backyard alone were just hundreds of hours.”
It wasn’t long before James’ younger sister, Teagan, joined in. Teagan followed Riley to Barnstable High, made the varsity as an eighth-grader and is now the team’s starting setter.
“My mom and sister would be peppering in the backyard, and I’d want to join those really bad,” Teagan said. “I’ve always looked up to Riley and wanted to be like her, so when I saw her play volleyball I wanted to do the same thing.”
James has never been one to rest on her offensive power. She has 1,652 career kills, sure, but she’s also a top-three player on the team with 172 digs this season (868 career), and her defensive skills have allowed her to play in every rotation since her freshman year.
“Growing up peppering, that really helped,” James said. “That develops your whole game and your ball-control especially. We’d be in the backyard and my mom would just be hitting volleyballs at me, and I loved that.”
Bourne High School has its own history of volleyball success, but James said she opted for Barnstable after the eighth grade because of its larger enrollment and number of Advanced Placement classes.
She’s currently taking AP Calculus BC, Spanish and Psychology. She’s also the secretary of the school’s chapter of the Spanish National Honor Society.
“It’s been a really great fit across the board,” James said. “This program has been such a big part of my life for the last four years. I know it will be going forward, but it’s kind of crazy to think it’s almost all over, and I’m definitely going to miss it a lot.”
James made an impact immediately upon her arrival in Barnstable. She earned a starting spot as a freshman and had 16 aces in the state championship match against Andover, her ace clinching a 31-29 win in the first set that paved the way for a Red Raiders sweep.
She took a lot of the offensive production on,” Turco said. “To be 14 and take that on, you have to have pretty broad shoulders. She was so welcomed by the entire team.”
That dominance has continued for all four years, leading to numerous honors including Gatorade Massachusetts Player of the Year as a sophomore in 2016, MaxPreps Underclass All-American in 2016 and 2017, and Old Colony League All-Star each of her first three years. She was named a preseason MaxPreps All-American this summer and an American Volleyball Coaches Association First-Team All-American last week.
“Winning state championships freshman and sophomore year, all that work finally culminating at the end, those are really special memories,” James said. “All the players that I’ve played with, it’s just been great all four years.”
Turco doesn’t like to rank the players that have come through his program, though only one other has recorded over 1,000 kills (Stephanie Bristol, 2008). His recurring compliment for James is that she’s an even better teammate than she is a player.
James set the state record Wednesday in the semifinals against Dartmouth, but all she did to celebrate was briefly slap hands with her teammates.
She gave a much larger and louder cheer on a kill by Sophie Strock against Oliver Ames in the quarterfinals Monday, a play in which James never touched the ball.
“That’s the way it is in this program,” Turco said. “It speaks to her character, but every kid is like that.”
Club volleyball has always followed right on the heels of the end of the varsity season. James moved on to Southern Alliance Volleyball in Randolph in seventh grade, where she met fellow outside hitter Ingrid Murphy.
The two have spent the last three seasons as the heart of the Barnstable attack.
“I’d always heard of her because she was this really good volleyball player from Bourne,” Murphy said of James. “I was just impressed that at that young she had those skills.”
James joined Smash Volleyball in the ninth grade. That exposed James to competition all over the country, the team advancing to the national championships over the summer.
“It was a good opportunity to play with different people from around the state,” James said.
Smash Volleyball practices in Newton three times a week. That’s a lot of driving for the James family — Teagan also plays for Smash — but Merry said she enjoys it.
“I would not want to put her on (Route) 128 at 5 o’clock on a Thursday afternoon,” Merry said, laughing.
James’ volleyball career will continue at Division I Bryant University in Rhode Island next year. The team contacted her last December and offered her a spot after her campus visit in February. She verbally committed later that month and can sign her National Letter of Intent as early as Wednesday. She plans to major in business.
“It was that level of volleyball and that level of academics that I was looking for in this region,”
James said. “It’s a pretty small school, and I just love the campus and the way that everyone interacts with each other on campus. Everyone knows each other and really cares.” James’ numbers might seem like they’d attract bigger schools than Bryant, but height matters in volleyball. Outside hitters for the top five teams in the nation — BYU, Stanford, Minnesota, Illinois and Texas, according to NCAA.com — average over 6 feet, while James is 5-foot-10.
“There are two big biases that she was fighting against,” Dimov said. “One of them is that she’s a bit undersized, and one of them is that she’s from New England, where traditionally the level of volleyball is not as strong.
“Bryant will be a good fit for her, and we’ll see how she does.”
James sets state mark as Raiders roll to tourney win
Riley James celebrates with Barnstable teammate Ingrid Murphy after breaking the state record for career kills.
Barnstable outside hitter Riley James watched Dartmouth’s defense creep closer and closer to the net as the two teams scrambled to volley the ball back over the net early in the second set.
She spotted an opening over the top, rolled her shot toward the backline and set a state record.
James broke the Massachusetts record for career kills, notching her 1,643rd in a 19-kill performance as the No. 1 Red Raiders swept the No. 4 Indians 25-15, 25-10, 25-8 in the Division 1 South semifinals Wednesday at Barnstable High School.
James broke the record set by Weston’s Athena Ardila, a former club teammate of James’ with Smash Volleyball, in 2016.
“I’m just grateful for all the opportunities that I’ve gotten,” James said. “It’s not something that I was going for at all.
“It was really nice just to play in front of the fans one more time. This community is the best volleyball community, I think, in Massachusetts.”
Barnstable (21-0), which still hasn’t lost a set, will take on No. 2 New Bedford in the sectional finals Saturday at Silver Lake in Kingston. New Bedford, which Barnstable swept in the 2017 South finals, edged Walpole 3-2 to advance.
James’ kill came on a sequence in which the ball crossed the net seven times before she finally put it away. Dartmouth (17-4) dove to pop up two different tips by James — one from the right side of the court, one from the left — and Lindsey Oliveira blocked James’ third attempt.
Barnstable libero Josie Deluga (14 digs) punched the ball up into the air, and sister Teagan James (30 assists, three aces) put the set in the air. Riley arced the ball up over the defense, drilling the back line to cut Dartmouth’s lead to 3-2 and set the record.
A brief, muted celebration followed, as she paused to slap hands with her teammates and her record was announced to the crowd.
“That’s the way she wanted it,” said Barnstable coach Tom Turco. “Tremendous athlete, tremendous volleyball player, and even a better kid.”
James tied the game on the next point with a hard cross-court shot, highlighting the variety of ways she’s scored in her four years on the varsity. She’s recorded kills from the outside, middle and opposite positions, has scored on tips and back-row attacks and slides, and can target any spot on the court from the sidelines to the back line to the dead center
“I kind of saw them pinch in and pick up on those tips a little bit,” said James, who added three aces and 10 digs on defense. “We were shifting stuff around, just going with different shots to try to go deep.”
That brief second-set lead was the only time Dartmouth was ahead in its third match of the season against the Red Raiders. Barnstable swept Dartmouth twice en route to another Old Colony League title, and four straight kills by James made it 6-1 Barnstable in the first set. She finished the first with nine kills, tying the state record on the last point of the set.
A series of unforced Dartmouth errors followed by Riley James’ ace gave Barnstable an 8-4 lead in the second, and two aces by Teagan James later pushed the lead to 18-8. Teagan was also at the line for a 7-0 run to start the third set, and Dartmouth never recovered.
Ingrid Murphy (10 kills, 11 digs) added two kills and a block in an 11-0 run to go up 21-4, later putting away the match-winner with another kill.
“We knew coming in this was going to be a miracle to beat Barnstable,” said Dartmouth coach Rachel Lassey. “If we were going down, we were going down with bodies hitting the floor.”
Red Raider Crush
Riley James helps Barnstable sweep Oliver Ames in South quarterfinal
Photos by Ron Schloerb, Cape Cod Times
HYANNIS - Riley James made it clear from the first point that Barnstable’s girls volleyball team has little time for the lower seeds of the Division 1 South tournament.
The Red Raiders found themselves taking down the net and thinking about their next match less than hour later.
James crushed 20 kills, Ingrid Murphy supplied 11 and No. 1-seeded Barnstable advanced to another sectional semifinal with a quick 25-10, 25-5, 25-12 win over the No. 8 Oliver Ames Tigers on Monday night.
Barnstable (20-0) has yet to lose a set during this undefeated season. The Red Raiders will host No. 4 Dartmouth, a 3-0 winner over Hingham on Monday and an opponent Barnstable swept twice during the Old Colony League portion of its schedule, in the semis Wednesday at 6 p.m.
“That’s the first step of five,” said Barnstable coach Tom Turco. “You can’t take the second one until you get to the first one, but they played their hearts out, they played really hard and it was reflected.”
James now has 1,633 career kills. She’s 10 away from breaking the state record of 1,642 set by Weston’s Athena Ardila in 2016, meaning she should become the state’s all-time leading scorer in her final home game.
Oliver Ames (14-8) struggled to find any offensive rhythm against a Red Raiders defense led by James (13 digs) and libero Josie Deluga (10 digs). Several Tiger hits forced Barnstable to scramble, but even those plays often led to solid sets by Teagan James (38 assists) and good swings by her hitters.
One sequence saw James go to her knees for a dig midway through the first set, slip getting up but still recover in time to crush the ball for a kill and 14-7 lead. Most of the Tigers’ points in the first two sets came off unforced Barnstable errors, and each set saw the Red Raiders eventually take control.
Teagan James was at the service line during a six-point run in the first set, older sister Riley and Dorian Funk each scoring twice to help the team take a 19-7 lead.
“That was a great overall team win,” Riley said. “We were really clicking today. It was a motivating game that might’ve been our last home game of the year. It was really fun to start the playoffs that way.”
Murphy’s turn to shine came in the second set, going to the service line with her team ahead 12-5. She put 13 consecutive jump-serves in play (and two more to start the third set), getting an ace on one and wearing down the Tigers to the point that they couldn’t get off even one solid hitting attempt.
“The energy was awesome in this game, and it’s just a good stepping stone into the next game and whatever is to follow,” said Murphy, whose 11 kills put her over 900 for her career.
Oliver Ames led briefly in the third set, going up 4-2 on an ace by Grace McCallum and kill by Jordan Vella, then staying ahead 5-3 on a Barnstable serving error. But Josie Deluga tied the set with an ace, then Riley James fired two kills sandwiched around an OA hitting error for an 8-5 lead Barnstable never relinquished.
Two aces by Madelyn Murphy and two kills by Ingrid Murphy pushed the lead to 19-9. Teagan James added three kills down the stretch.
“We’ve worked really hard to get to this point,” Teagan James said. “I’m happy with how everybody played.”
Barnstable's James named All-American
Barnstable senior outside hitter Riley James was named an American Volleyball Coaches Association First-Team All-American on Wednesday. James is the only Massachusetts player to be named an All-American this year, and the 24 players on the First Team will compete in the Under Armour All-America Match on Dec. 14 in Minneapolis.
“Coach (Tom) Turco told me, and I was surprised and obviously honored,” James said. “It’s going to be cool to play with some of the best players in the country. It’s cool to get out of that comfort zone and go out to play some people from different places.”
James is one of the top hitters in the state, ranking second in the state with 6.2 kills per game, fourth with a .481 hitting percentage and fifth with 319 total kills according to MaxPreps. She’s served up 35 aces and also contributed eight blocks and 149 digs.
A four-year varsity starter with over 1,600 career kills, James has won multiple awards as a Red Raider. She was the Gatorade Massachusetts Player of the Year as a sophomore in 2016, a MaxPreps Underclass All-American in 2016 and 2017 and an Old Colony League All-Star each of her first three years.
She began the year by becoming the first Barnstable player ever to be named a preseason MaxPreps All-American. James, who’s committed to Division I Bryant University next year, is now the second in program history to be named an AVCA All-American, the first being Stephanie Bristol in 2008.
“AVCA All-American is the biggest award you can get,” Turco said. “To be recognized at the level is an incredible achievement.
“She’s a tremendous player, but a better teammate. ... She’s doing everything she can possibly do to get the team to its team goals.”
Barnstable coach Tom Turco only settles for the best
Tom Turco, with assistant Marylou Robles, has had a decorated 31-year run as Barnstable’s varsity girls’ volleyball coach.
Tom Turco loves to quote coaches, whether the name is Red Auerbach, Bill Belichick, or . . . Pat Riley.
And in a decorated 31-year run as the varsity girls’ volleyball coach at Barnstable High, Turco has utilized their words, or messages, in conveying pertinent points to his teams. ADVERTISING
On Wednesday afternoon, after wrapping up a lively conversation in which he talked at length, with pride, about the program, Turco took issue when he received a “good luck” in advance of the Red Raiders’ first-round game in the Division 1 South tournament.
“Luck is the residue of design,” said Turco, who has guided Barnstable, the Globe’s top-ranked team, to an 19-0 regular season.
Luck has not been part of the equation. Turco planned it this way, meticulously crafting a program capable of continued dominance since 1988.
He had worked as an assistant the previous two seasons under Lorraine Dunnett.
“Managing people and being responsible for varsity teams, that was a growth point,” he said. “My first year we went 5-11 and we changed the culture basically after that year. It was a lot of trial by error in the coaching aspect. On a positive note, I think I learned from my first-year errors."
The turnaround was immediate.
Barnstable went 20-2 in 1989 and won the first of its 18 Division 1 titles in 1993. There have also been 23 South crowns, all with Turco prowling the sideline in his signature khaki shorts and Barnstable polo.
His .918 winning percentage (676-61 record) is better than the dominance of Nick Saban (.782) with the Alabama football program, or Geno Auriemma (.883) with UConn women’s basketball.
Turco expects a lot from his players, putting the Red Raiders through tough training sessions and intricately planned practices.
“The consistency every day, it’s the little things that he does that have us as prepared as possible,” said senior hitterRiley James.
“That’s what I love about this program, how focused it is. And it’s all because of him. Every day, there’s a practice plan down to the minute of what we have to work on and get done and it’s never easy. It’s always hard work, but he knows that and we know that.”
His talent pool is drawn from a student body of approximately 750 girls. So the key to sustainability is development at the youth level.
Early on, Turco reached out to Dana Defilipo(currently the head coach of the Greater Lowell boys), who had directed the Chelmsford girls to back-to-back titles. She offered an invite to her summer clinic.
“It was a home run,” said Turco. “I sat there and said to myself, ‘I am doing exactly what she does’ . . . Those kids were so tuned in. They learned, they had fun, they went outside totally away from volleyball to play a phys-ed game, they came back and were focused as can be on the next skill. And we’re still doing the same model.”
Turco had 13 campers his first year, including two of his own kids, then 50, and eventually, 200. That success prompted Turco to launch the Cape Cod Juniors club teams for middle school players.
“I think since we all start at the rec camps so young, it’s kind of like a filter,” said Barnstable senior Olivia Berler.
“Once we all sign up for the rec camp and end up loving it, then we all sign up for Juniors and then we just keep going throughout that. Coach Turco is obviously the head of all the camps and all the club teams and I think through an early bond with him and volleyball, we just all end up trying out in eighth grade together.”
Physical ability is an important aspect of Barnstable’s dominance. But so, too, is what happens off the court.
Instead of naming one or two captains per season, he assigns captaincy to each of the seniors, regardless of the size of the class or their contributions statistically.
Without creating a hierarchy of command, the gesture is well received. They all understand that they will have their time in which they are thrust into a leadership role.
Freshman coachJessie Goode, who played for Turco from 2003-06, appreciates that she can work with her players on next-level volleyball skills.
“To be able to teach kids in eighth or ninth grade different rotation styles or how to play with one setter or switching to play an actual position as opposed to just rotating around, it’s nice to start at that point as opposed to getting there at the end of the season,” said Goode. “That’s a huge advantage right there, just having the knowledge of the game.”
The seniors, said Turco, have always been the leaders.
“In my experience, they all have gifts to give. They can be the leading producers, but they don’t have to be. I’ve had some tremendous captains and they all lead in such different ways. It’s amazing how these kids can lead just by example and with subtle things. You might get a player who doesn’t get a lot of playing time and they’re a senior captain, and they’re as dedicated and committed to the team goals as anybody else on that team.”
Each season, Turco schedules six 90-minute sessions in the classroom, teaching his players from Riley’s book, “The Winner Within: A Life Plan for Team Players.” The first chapter culminates with a players-only meeting to develop season goals.
A friend had dropped off the book at Turco’s house. “It sat on my desk for a year,” he said. “I just couldn’t bring myself to read a book by the coach of the Lakers back in the ’90s. But when I read it, it was an absolute golden fit for my high school program.”
The book has become a staple, and the concepts resonate.
“We did ‘The Winner Within’ when I was there all four years and it’s something that I still do today,” said Barnstable gradNatalie Cohen, now the head coach at Dean College.
“I literally still have my book with all my notes and scribbles in it that I got back in 2003 and it’s been able to help me tremendously with my coaching and my teams now. The way the book is set up, it’s strategic in the fact that it compliments every point of the season and for some crazy reason, it always matches up a chapter with something that the team in going through.”
On the court, the success has been astounding.
In his tenure, Turco has coached multiple All Americans, eight Massachusetts Gatorade Players of the Year, and 66 Boston Globe All-Scholastics. There were a state-record 110 consecutive wins from 2003-07.
He was elected into the State Coaches’ Hall of Fame in 2004. His teams have always maintained a 3.30 cumulative GPA or above since 2013 to earn the AVCA Team Academic Award.
These days, he has a bit more time to devote to coaching. In 2014, Turco retired after teaching phys ed to special needs students for 30 years.
He still demands excellence. At Wednesday’s practice, Turco asked James,Ingrid Murphy, andJosie Delugato return 75 spikes with pinpoint passes right to a teammate planted inside of a hula hoop within 11 minutes. He expects excellence, and the players do, too.
Leaving practice with her fellow seniors, James was offered a “good luck” in the tourney. She paused at the door, turned, and unprompted said, “Coach Turco would be disappointed in us if we didn’t say this: But luck is the residue of design.”
New Bedford coachNeil Macedoearned his 600th career win with the Whalers’ 3-0 sweep of Taunton in the regular-season finale. “I feel old, that’s how I feel,” said Macedo, in his 35th season. “How do you get to 600 wins? You coach a long, long, time. I’ve been fortunate enough to have a lot of real good athletes.” The Whalers (18-1) claimed the second seed in the D1 South bracket and await the winner of Brockton/North Attleboro in the quarterfinals . . . The Division 1 Central/West bracket is loaded this year. Undefeated top seeds Acton-Boxborough and Franklin won’t have it easy if they want to advance to the state semifinals. Third-seeded Hopkinton and sixth-seeded Needham will be a great matchup if both advance, while fourth-seeded Shrewsbury and fifth-seeded Lincoln-Sudbury could both make runs to a sectional final in a less competitive bracket . . . Essex Tech fell to Danvers, leaving just five undefeated teams left in EMass heading into the state tournament: No. 1 Barnstable (19-0), No. 4 Acton-Boxborough (17-0), No. 5 Franklin (17-0), No. 6 Lawrence (18-0), and Tri-County (22-0)
Riley James Barnstable -- James was named to the Under Armour All-America first team on Wednesday, the only Massachusetts player named to any of the three teams or honorable mentions. Her 20 kills in a sweep of Duxbury leave her 30 away from breaking the career state record.
UNDER ARMOUR® GIRLS HIGH SCHOOL ALL-AMERICA AWARDS PROGRAM -- Riley James First-Team All-America
Under Armour All-America Match LEXINGTON, Ky. (October 31, 2018) - The American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) is proud to announce the 13th annual Under Armour Girls High School All-America Teams.
A record 793 nominations were submitted through the AVCA and MaxPreps, resulting in 150 All-America and Honorable Mention All-Americans. Many already committed to play collegiate volleyball at some of the top schools in the country.
Each of the players on the First-Team will be invited to play in the Under Armour All-America Volleyball Match. The event will be held at the Target Center on Friday, December 14th in conjunction with the 2018 AVCA Convention. For details on attending the match in person or watching online, please visit our Under Armour All-America Match webpage.
Requirements for nomination were that the student-athlete be in her senior year of high school, that she be nominated by her high school coach, that her coach be a member of the AVCA and that her individual season statistics versus all opponents for the entire season be entered into MaxPreps, a free service that aggregates and distributes data on high school sports.
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Barnstable, Falmouth earn No. 1 seeds
The Barnstable and Bourne girls volleyball teams both came up just short of championship banners in 2017. Barnstable cruised into the Division 1 state semifinals with an undefeated record and having not lost a set since mid-September, then watched their hopes for the program’s 19th state championship get swept away by a Newton North squad they’d beaten 3-0 during the regular season.
Bourne advanced all the way to the state championship match for the first time since 2009, then lost in three sets to a Frontier squad far more used to playing for state titles.
Barnstable, Bourne and Falmouth all received top-two seeds in South Sectional brackets released by the Massachusetts Interscholastic Athletic Association on Tuesday. Barnstable and Falmouth earned No. 1 seeds and automatic byes into the quarterfinals in Divisions 1 and 2, respectively, while Bourne took the No. 2 seed in Division 3. Sandwich, Nantucket and Sturgis East also qualified.
“This is better than the Fourth of July,” said Barnstable coach Tom Turco. “Single-elimination (tournaments), it’s just indescribable. You work really really hard to get home-field advantage.”
Barnstable (19-0) will get the winner of Thursday’s game between No. 8 Oliver Ames (13-7) and No. 9 Durfee (12-8) in the quarterfinals. The Red Raiders, Old Colony League champions for the 18th straight year, haven’t lost a set in a varsity match this season (they did lose one at a tournament in Westboro on Oct. 20) and will be aiming for their 24th South Sectional title since 1993.
“We play top-10 teams all the time, but the tournament gets progressively harder, as in any tournament, whether it’s the football playoffs or the NBA,” Turco said. “It’s a five-step process to get to where we want to go, and that’s the way we look at it.”
Barnstable 3, Duxbury 0
Senior Riley James struck for a match-high 20 kills, helping the Red Raiders close out an undefeated season with a 25-10, 25-15, 25-15 win in Barnstable.
James added nine points at the service line and seven digs defensively for Barnstable (19-0) on Senior Night.
Senior Ingrid Murphy added 12 kills and a match-high 11 digs, while senior Madelyn Murphy added three digs and senior Olivia Berler had two digs and two service points.
Freshman Teagan James finished with 37 assists, while adding six aces at the line. Josie Deluga, a junior, had eight digs and two aces, classmate Dorian Funk had four kills and sophomore Sophie Strock had three blocks.
Barnstable 3, Andover 0
Senior Riley James had a match-high 16 kills to go along with 10 points at the service line, leading the Red Raiders to a 25-8, 25-11, 25-12 win in Hyannis.
Senior Ingrid Murphy (9 kills, 3 aces, 5 digs) had 13 points at the line for Barnstable (18-0).
Freshman setter Teagan James spread the offense around with 29 assists, while also adding a match-high 11 points at the line, with five aces.
Junior Josie Deluga contributed nine digs on defense, and junior Dorian Funk chipped in with seven points at the line.
Andover is 12-6.
Barnstable 3, Case 0
Riley James smashed 18 kills, Ingrid Murphy had 13 and each had three aces as the Red Raiders beat the Cardinals in Swansea to remain perfect on the season.
Murphy added 10 digs and James had nine on defense for Barnstable (17-0), which still hasn’t lost a set in a regular-season match. Teagan James recorded a season-high 38 assists with two aces, Josie Deluga had seven digs and 14 service points, Emily Mulcahy and Dorian Funk had four and three kills, respectively, and Madelyn Murphy added three digs.
Barnstable wins Westboro Tournament
The Red Raiders swept through morning and afternoon pool play, before edging Newton North in the finals to win the Westboro “Ranger Hawk” Tournament in Westboro.
Barnstable beat Medfield (25-9, 25-9), Sacred Heart (25-16, 25-19) and Minnechaug (25-18, 25-18) in the morning, before beating Westboro (25-19, 25-12), AMSA (25-14, 25-14) and Hopkinton (25-16, 25-12) in the afternoon.
Newton North then pushed the Red Raiders to a third set, before Barnstable prevailed, 25-20, 21-25, 15-6.
The Red Raiders beat Newton North in the semifinals of the VolleyHall Classic earlier this month, before winning the tournament with a finals victory over Hollis/Brookline (N.H).
Giving it all they've got
Barnstable Volleyball seniors feel "sense of urgency"
One of the perils of being a highly successful athletic program is the level of expectations that frequently come with the territory.
Fans of the New England Patriot football dynasty can never be truly satisfied unless their season ends with a trip to the Super Bowl.
So, too, are those who have followed the Red Sox after a third-straight American League East Division title. If you don’t move onto the World Series, there just seems to be something missing.
If you understand that, then you can probably also sympathize with the Barnstable girls’ volleyball team and their feeling that success needs to result with a state championship.
Few can blame them.
Under the direction of veteran coach Tom Turco, the girls have been piling up state championship after state championship – 18 in total since 1993. They are also 23-time South Sectional Division 1 champions.
Yet when last season ended in the state semifinals to nemesis Newton North, it left a gnawing feeling in the gullet of every girl who is part of the program.
The redemption tour 2019 began at the beginning of this season.
“Definitely we weren’t happy how our season ended last year,” said senior captain Riley James. “In this program, we set our goals really high, and we do everything we can to reach those goals.”
Turco, who has been at the helm for every state championship season, knows that preparation is the key to any type of championship run.
“They’ve experienced the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat,” he said. “They’re pretty motivated, but it’s always a sense of urgency for seniors.”
“It’s a game of pressure. There are pressure situations, and we’ve trained them for those situations,” he continued. “All you can do it set your goals and work to achieve those goals.”
To this point, the Red Raiders are a perfect 16-0 and have achieved an even higher level of perfection – they have not lost a single set to this point, an amazing 48-straight set run.
“The loss last year to Newton North was one of the worst feelings we’ve experienced as a team,” said senior captain Olivia Berler. “It was a huge goal this season to come back and get revenge and hopefully achieve our number one goal of a state championship.”
Each of the four senior captains echoed that same phrase, the “sense of urgency,” as they can hear the imaginary clock in their heads ticking down the final games of their careers.
“It’s our last year to get the job done and it’s something we’ve been working at every year,” said senior captain Madelyn Murphy. “We set our goals high each year and we work hard for it. We know what it takes to reach those goals.”
While all players on the team realize the importance of their roles on the team, the seniors feel a special responsibility to see that each game is played with that final goal in mind.
“We have to give it all we’ve got with the time that we have left,” said senior captain Ingrid Murphy. “It’s definitely unfinished business. It’s very important for us to come out on top.”
James has experienced many highs during this, her final season. She was named a pre-season All-American and last week achieved a milestone as the first-ever player in Barnstable volleyball history to achieve 1,500 kills.
Individual marks are great, but James has only one milestone on her mind.
“We work hard every day in practice to get there,” she said. “There’s no pressure except for the pressure we put on ourselves. We hold ourselves to a really high standard and we have high expectations of our level of play.”
The Red Raiders have already clinched their 19th straight Old Colony League championship but never get too far ahead of themselves.
“One of our goals is to have an undefeated season, but that’s not the one we’re after the most,” said Madelyn Murphy.
So, set by set, game by game, and practice by practice, the feeling of last season’s playoff loss is always in the backs of their minds.
“We know what that felt like last year, and, as seniors, it’s our last shot,” said Ingrid Murphy. “We want to go all the way this year. As seniors, we talk about that sense of urgency, and we know it’s our last year. We really want it this year.”
Turco remains his usual unflappable self when it comes to the successful run his program has achieved and all of its accomplishments.
“Every single team who comes down here to face us is going to do their best to try to put a mark against us,” he said.
Barnstable 3, Notre Dame 0
Senior Riley James had 17 kills and 12 digs, sparking the Red Raiders to their third sweep in as many nights with a 25-8, 25-15, 25-15 victory in Hingham.
Senior Ingrid Murphy added nine kills and eight digs for Barnstable (16-0), which swept Medfield on Monday and North Quincy on Tuesday.
Junior Josie Deluga added a match-high 15 digs for the Red Raiders to go along with 11 points at the service line, with six aces. Freshman Teagan James spread the offense around at setter with 27 assists while adding 20 points at the line, with eight aces, and seven digs. Emily Mulcahy and Dorian Funk chipped in with two kills each.
Barnstable volleyball hands North Quincy first loss
Seniors Riley James and Ingrid Murphy combined for 29 kills as the host Barnstable Red Raiders won a battle of undefeated girls volleyball teams with a 25-9, 25-7, 25-13 victory against the North Quincy Red Raiders on Tuesday.
James led the way at the net for Barnstable (15-0) with 18 kills while adding nine digs and a match-high 15 points at the service line. Murphy added 11 kills, five digs and 11 points at the line, with a pair of aces.
Freshman Teagan James sparked the offense with 31 assists while adding five digs and 10 points at the line, with four aces. Junior Josie Deluga contributed a match-high 18 digs defensively, as well as eight points at the line, including two aces. Sophomore Sophie Strock had four kills and two blocks and junior Dorian Funk had two kills and two assists.
Barnstable 3, Medfield 0
Freshman Teagan James spread the Red Raider offense around with 23 assists, while serving for 18 points, with four aces at the line, in a 25-8, 25-11, 25-13 win in Medfield.
Seniors Riley James and Ingrid Murphy led Barnstable (14-0) at the net. James finished with 16 kills, to go along with three aces, while Murphy had five kills and a match-high nine digs.
Sophomore Sophie Strock added four kills to the Red Raiders’ cause, while seniors Olivia Berler and Madelyn Murphy were strong at the service line, combining for six points. Junior Dorian Funk chipped in with four assists.
James first to reach 1,500 kills for Barnstable volleyball
Senior captain Riley James became the first Barnstable volleyball player to amass 1,500 varsity kills, and the Red Raiders clinched their 19th straight Old Colony League title by beating Dartmouth, 25-15, 25-18, 25-11, on Wednesday.
James reached the milestone with her 13th kill in the second set and finished with 21 total, plus 12 digs. Senior Ingrid Murphy added nine kills and seven digs for Barnstable (13-0, 4-0 OCL).
Freshman setter Teagan James spread the offense around with 33 assists, while junior Josie Deluga had 11 digs and a season-high 18 points at the service line. Sophie Strock and Lauren Ogonowski were both key at middle hitter, contributing two kills each.
Barnstable wins third VolleyHall Classic
SPRINGFIELD - The Barnstable Red Raiders swept their way through morning and afternoon pool play, edged Newton North in the semifinals and downed Hollis/Brookline (N.H.) in the finals to win the VolleyHall Classic volleyball tournament for the third straight year Monday at American International College.
Barnstable beat Newton North in the semifinals, 25-23, before beating Hollis/Brookline in the finals, 25-18.
The Red Raiders went 6-0 in the morning, sweeping Greely, Maine (25-16, 25-12), Bristol of Eastern, R.I. (25-17, 25-17) and Reading (25-14, 25-20). Barnstable repeated that success in the afternoon, downing Scarsdale, N.Y. (25-14, 25-10), Newton North (25-14, 25-17) and Farmington, Conn. (25-14, 25-18).
Barnstable 3, Winchester 0
Senior Riley James had a match-high 19 kills to go along with 11 digs, leading the undefeated Red Raiders past the Sachems, 25-9, 25-22, 25-16, in Hyannis.
Senior Ingrid Murphy added 16 kills for Barnstable (12-0) as well as seven digs to down Winchester (8-3).
Freshman Teagan James had 34 assists at setter, while junior Josie Deluga served for 12 points at the line.
Barnstable 3, Bridgewater-Raynham 0
Riley James had 17 kills, fellow senior captain Ingrid Murphy had 11 kills and the Red Raiders remained undefeated with a 25-4, 25-10, 25-11 Old Colony League victory over the Trojans in Bridgewater. Murphy also had seven digs and three aces for the Red Raiders (11-0, 3-0 OCL), who got 36 assists and three aces from Teagan James and a team-high 20 service points, plus four aces and six digs, from Madelyn Murphy.
Dorian Funk, Sophie Strock and Emily Mulcahy finished with four kills each for Barnstable.
Barnstable 3, Westborough 0
Barnstable volleyball makes the playoffs
WESTBORO - Barnstable senior Ingrid Murphy had a match-high 17 kills, leading the Red Raiders to their 10th win of the season and a berth in the girls volleyball playoffs with a 25-14, 25-20, 25-9 win against the Westboro Rangers on Monday.
Murphy had another match high on the night with 12 digs while also contributing a pair of aces at the service line for Barnstable (10-0). Senior Riley James added 13 kills, 10 points at the service line, with three aces, and seven digs.
Junior Josie Deluga (two aces) and senior Madelyn Murphy were both strong defensively for the Red Raiders with 10 and six digs, respectively. Junior Dorian Funk added a team-high 11 points at the service line, while freshman Teagan James had 31 assists and sophomore Emily Mulcahy contributed a block and two kills.
Barnstable 3, Dennis-Yarmouth 0
Freshman Teagan James sparked the Red Raiders offense with 27 assists, while serving for 18 points at the line, with four aces, to lead Barnstable past the Dolphins, 25-13, 25-10, 25-9, in Hyannis.
Senior Ingrid Murphy led the way for the Red Raiders (9-0) at the net with 10 kills, two aces and nine digs, while senior Riley James had eight kills, two aces and four digs.
Junior Josie Deluga had 12 digs and three aces for Barnstable, while Dorian Funk and Sophie Strock had five kills each.
Freshman Lucy Swanson led Dennis-Yarmouth (2-6) at the net with six kills, while senior captain Sam Balboni had four kills and a block. Senior Kim Murray added four kills herself, to go along with a block, and freshman Alayna Rooney had 20 service receptions and 20 digs.
Barnstable sweeps Hopkinton in top-two showdown
HYANNIS - Barnstable senior captains Riley James and Ingrid Murphy combined for 31 kills and 18 digs, leading the undefeated Red Raiders past the previously undefeated Hopkinton Hillers 25-10, 25-16, 26-15 Tuesday in a battle of the top two Division 1 girls volleyball programs in the state.
James finished with 20 kills and 10 digs as well as 12 points at the service line for Barnstable (8-0). Murphy had 11 kills and eight digs.
Freshman Teagan James spread the Red Raiders’ offense around with 32 assists while striking for five aces. Sophomore Sophie Strock had three blocks, junior Dorian Funk had two kills and three blocks and junior Josie Deluga had a match-high 16 digs.
Honoring Olivia: Barnstable Sweeps Brockton on Emotional "Dig Yellow" Night
Pictures by Ron Schloerb, Cape Cod Times
HYANNIS - Olivia Brodt and her younger sister Caroline have moved on from the Barnstable girls volleyball program, but Olivia’s presence remains in the Red Raiders gymnasium.
A banner hangs on the wall behind the scorer’s table with Olivia’s name and the “3” she wore on her jersey, the only number ever retired by the team.
Olivia died from complications of cancer as a 20-year-old in 2016. Barnstable began its “Dig Yellow Night” that fall to raise money for childhood cancer awareness, and the unbeaten Red Raiders honored their 2014 senior co-captain with a 25-17, 25-7, 25-12 sweep of the Brockton Boxers in Monday’s third rendition of the event.
“It gets sentimental, knowing that my daughter played here, both my daughters played here,” said Craig Brodt, Olivia and Caroline’s father and an assistant coach for Barnstable. “We have the banner, and that makes it a special night, that remembrance of Olivia. Her number on our shirts, on our practice shirts, it brings out the community support.”
Yellow appeared all over the Barnstable gymnasium Monday, from streamers and balloons in the stands to motivational posters hanging on the walls. The Red Raiders (7-0) traded their typical jerseys for bright yellow ones, and even Brockton coach Kate Fallon-Comeau and her staff donned yellow garb.
Barnstable 3, Falmouth 0
Senior Riley James had 19 kills, 10 digs and two aces, helping the Red Raiders remained undefeated with a 25-13, 25-20, 25-12 victory over the Clippers in Hyannis.
Senior Ingrid Murphy added 12 kills, four aces and seven digs for Barnstable (7-0). Teagan James had 36 assists and nine digs for the Red Raiders, while Sophie Strock and Dorian Funk had two kills each.
Caroline Delinks and Daisha Pena had four kills apiece for Falmouth (5-2), which got solid all-around play from Caitlin Pope, Abigail Pope, Shea McCloud, Colleen Kerr, Riley Gregory.
Barnstable improves to 6-0 and has still not lost a set this year.
Barnstable 3, Dartmouth 0
Junior Josie Deluga led the Red Raiders defensively with 15 digs and added 14 points at the service line, with a game-high three aces, in a 25-16, 25-19, 25-13 Old Colony League win for Barnstable in South Dartmouth.
Seniors Ingrid Murphy and Riley James paced the Red Raiders (5-0, 2-0 OCL) at the net. Murphy had 12 kills to go along with a pair of service aces and 10 digs. James added 14 kills, six digs and three blocks.
Freshman Teagan James had 31 assists at setter for Barnstable, as well as two aces and three digs, sophomore Sophie Strock had three kills and three blocks and junior Dorian Funk had three kills, two blocks and three assists.
Dartmouth fell to 4-1 overall and 1-1 in the OCL.
Barnstable Volleyball sweeps Newton North in rematch
Senior Riley James had 21 kills, 19 digs and a pair of blocks, helping the Barnstable Red Raiders girls volleyball squad avenge a Division 1 state semifinal loss with a 25-15, 25-18, 25-18 win over Newton North on Monday evening.
Barnstable entered last season’s South Sectionals at 19-0 and swept their way through to their eight straight Sectional championship. Newton North then swept the Red Raiders, 3-0, en route to the 2017 state championship.
This time around, senior Ingrid Murphy added 14 kills and a match-high 21 digs to James’ efforts as Barnstable improved to 4-0 and dropped the Tigers to 2-2.
Freshman Teagan James spread the Red Raiders offense around with 34 digs, while adding seven digs defensively. Junior Josie Deluga added 11 digs, and sophomore Sophie Strock had three blocks.
Barnstable 3, Bridgewater-Raynham 0
Seniors Riley James and Ingrid Murphy combined for 21 kills and 10 aces, leading the Red Raiders to a 25-6, 25-6, 25-9 sweep of the Trojans in their Old Colony League opener in Hyannis.
James led the way for Barnstable (3-0, 1-0 OCL) with 13 kills and four aces, while Murphy had nine kills with six aces.
Freshman Teagan James spread the Red Raiders offense around with 29 assists and sophomore Sophie Strock had a strong game at the net with four kills.
CAPE COD TIMES
www.capecodtimes.com, September 7, 2018
Barnstable 3, Dennis Yarmouth 0
Seniors Ingrid Murphy and Riley James led the way for the Red Raiders at the net in a 25-6, 25-6, 25-12 win over the Dolphins in South Yarmouth.
Murphy led Barnstable (2-0) with 11 kills, while James had 10 and sophomore Sophie Strock added four. Juniors Dorian Funk and Lauren Ogonowsky chipped in with three kills each.
Freshman setter Teagan James spread the offense around with 28 assists, while junior Josie Deluga had eight digs defensively and Murphy added seven digs.
Barnstable had 20 aces as a team, with Funk, Deluga and James each striking four and James and Murphy each getting three.
Dennis-Yarmouth got two kills and four assists from Ana Luiza DaSilva, two kills and two blocks from Kim Murray, 13 service receptions and 14 digs from Alayna Rooney and two aces and 10 digs from Elise Gustafson.
High School Girls' Volleyball Rankings
Barnstable begins the season atop the the Globe's Top 20 girls' volleyball rankings, with defending D! state champion Newton North right behind the Red Raiders. Division 2 Duxbury comes in at No. 3, while D2 finalist Melrose is at No. 10. Division 3 finalist Bourne is ranked 16th.
Barnstable 3, Central Catholic 0
Seniors Riley James and Ingrid Murphy were key at the net, as Barnstable opened the season in Lawrence with a 25-11, 25-14, 25-8 victory.
James led the way with 20 kills while Murphy added 14.
Freshman Teagan James spread the offense around with 34 assists while also contributing five aces at the service line.
Junior Josie Deluga paced the defense with 11 digs while Riley James and Murphy added eight digs each.
Senior Olivia Berler closed out the match with four aces.
Plenty of Spikes in Barnstable's Annual Play Day
HYANNIS – Barnstable High prepares for a long season with a long day of volleyball. The Red Raiders, sporting tye-dye shirts like many teams, hosted their 10th annual Play Day on Saturday in a series of seven, 40-minute scrimmages.
Among the participating teams were Dennis-Yarmouth, Falmouth, Nantucket, Sandwich, Sturgis East and St. John Paul II. Off-Cape teams included Brockton, Cardinal Spellman, Duxbury, Frontier Regional, Hendrick Hudson (NY), Hopkinton, Longmeadow, Medfield and Plymouth North.
“These Play Days are a wealth of information because there’s a referee, a scoreboard and competitiveness,” said Tom Turco, who is entering his 31st season as Barnstable’s head coach. “I’m looking for competitive athletes.”
Barnstable senior Riley James, who was recently selected as a MaxPreps preseason All-American, seemed to be in midseason form, blocking shots at the net and hitting thunderous spikes. Fellow senior and outside hitter Ingrid Murphy also made her fair share of plays.
Barnstable had to get it going right away as its first match was against Hopkinton, last year’s Division 1 state runner-up.
“It’s nice to compete at a high level for a full day and getting into the swing of the season,” said James, who has committed to NCAA Division I Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island. Barnstable is trying to shake off last year’s disappointment when it went undefeated into the Division I state semifinals, but lost to eventual state champion Newton North, 3-0.
Turco and James both said there is an edge on this team to get back to the state title.
“I think it’s on on everybody’s mind that we don’t want that feeling again,” James said of last year’s loss.
Josie Deluga, who transferred to Barnstable from Dennis-Yarmouth after her family moved, was among those mixing in with the starters.
Deluga, a defensive setter and libero, said playing volleyball is making the transition easier.
“The team is welcoming and supportive of me,” said Deluga, who concluded the day with a match against her former team. “It feels awesome to be a part of this team. I feel a lot more in shape coming into this season.”
“She’s mixing in well with the girls,” Turco said. “She’s got a good work ethic and great defensive ability.”
Barnstable opens its season at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday at Central Catholic High School in Lawrence.
High school notebook: Barnstable’s James named preseason All-American
HYANNIS – Barnstable senior outside hitter Riley James is the only Massachusetts player among the 38 recently selected to the 2018 preseason MaxPreps All-American volleyball team. James has tallied nearly 1,300 kills and over 100 aces in her three seasons as a Red Raiders starter, helping her team win two state championships and three South Sectional titles in that stretch.
Barnstable coach Tom Turco said James is the first preseason All-American in program history. She and fellow outside hitter Ingrid Murphy have been on the varsity since they were freshmen and will join Olivia Berler and Madelyn Murphy as this fall’s senior class.
“Not only do they have to produce on the court, they have to embrace the expanded role of being senior captains,” Turco said. “We know what we’re getting in ability, and we’re sure of what we’re getting in leadership”
James, who has committed to NCAA Division I Bryant University, led the state with 483 kills last year to go along with 41 aces, five blocks and 255 digs. She was named a MaxPreps Underclass All-American in 2016 and 2017 and was the Gatorade Massachusetts Player of the Year in 2016.
“A school like Bryant is a perfect fit for her,” Turco said. “I think the expectations are going to be similar to what we have here.”
Barnstable Volleyball Wins AVCA Team Academic Award
Barnstable's girls volleyball team has won the 2017-18 American Volleyball Coaches Association Team Academic Award.
More Information on AVCA Team Academic Award...
AVCA Team Academic Award Recipients: https://www.avca.org/awards/2017-2018-avca-team-academic-award-recipients.html