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Eighth-seeded Fitch High School rallied from a 2-1 deficit to upset No. 1 Lyman Memorial 12-25, 25-19, 22-25, 25-18 and 15-9 in the quarterfinals of the Eastern Connecticut Conference volleyball tournament Monday night.
The Falcons (12-9) join No. 2 Ledyard, No. 3 East Lyme and No. 5 Woodstock Academy - all Large Division schools - in tonight's semifinals at Norwich Free Academy. Ledyard will face East Lyme at 4:30 p.m. followed by Fitch vs. Woodstock at 6:30.
Woodstock is the defending champion.
"It should be a great match," Fitch coach Steve Banks said of tonight's matchup with Woodstock (the two schools split their regular season meetings).
"Woodstock has arguably one of best players in state in Sarah Swenson, so we know it's going to be a battle, but we're willing to take our chances."
Against No. 1 Lyman, the Small Division champion, Mae Sefransky had 26 assists, Michelina Pinto 26 digs and Taylor Kelsey 14 kills.
Banks said Kelsey played a major role in Fitch's comeback.
"It was really defense that brought us back," Banks said. "We started attacking and being the aggressor, and Kelsey had the best match of her career. She was really pounding the ball down.
"It was a great match between two good teams in a really good atmosphere (at Lyman)."
In other quarterfinal games:
• No. 2 Ledyard bounced back from a 25-20 loss in the first game to win three straight from No. 7 Griswold 25-5, 25-6 and 25-10. Michelle Klinikowski had 14 kills, four blocks and four aces for the Colonels (20-1) while Jenny Nohara had 46 assists and Alyssa Gregory four aces.
• No. 3 East Lyme advanced with a 25-3, 19-25, 24-19 and 25-20 win over No. 6 NFA. Catherine Buckley had 11 kills for the Vikings (14-6) while Maggy Powers had eight kills and Hannah Burke added 17 digs. The Wildcats (12-8) were led by Brianne Brennan with nine digs and six kills while Alyssa Velles finished with nine kills and Abby Mattern had eight digs.
• No. 5 Woodstock eliminated Medium Division champion Waterford 25-15, 25-20 and 25-15. Amanda Tourjee led the No. 4 Lancers (13-6) with 17 assists and Lexi Moger added 13 kills.