Get our newsletters
Boys Volleyball

Pennridge’s season ends at hands of Central Dauphin


If only it could have gone on forever.

But for the Pennridge boys volleyball team, the dream season came to a close.

Pennridge was defeated, 3-0 (25-13, 25-19, 25-17) by Central Dauphin in Saturday’s quarterfinal round of the PIAA Class 3A boys volleyball tournament, held at Schuylkill Valley High School.

“That was definitely the best team we played all year,” senior captain Ryan Benscoter said. “We knew coming in that they were well-coached. I know Josh (Brenneman, the Central Dauphin coach), I play with him in club, I know how he coaches his team. That was a very, very well-coached team and they just executed.

“Of course, this is a tough end to the season. We were a Cinderella story, and we wanted it to go on as long as humanly possible. We knew it was a tough match, it’s not like we weren’t prepared for this, but it’s still a tough way to go. Credit to them. They played a great game.”

Central Dauphin dominated the first game, leading from start to finish, but by the second game, Pennridge had regrouped and taken a small lead several times. It was too difficult to pull away from Central Dauphin. CD, the District Three third-place team, kept closing the gaps and pulling ahead. Neither team had a big scoring run all day but CD was able to get bursts of three or four consecutive points, which Pennridge couldn’t match.

“They came out and slapped us across the face in the first game and we knew it, and there was nothing we could do about it,” Benscoter said. “But we tried to play our own game for the next two sets and this is how it ended up.

“This was still a fantastic run for us. I had the most fun I ever had playing volleyball here with these guys. I really enjoyed this season and I think we’re leaving the team in a good place. I just want them to have fun. This whole run was about having a good time this season and I think they have a really good chance to be successful next year and get another ride like this.”

The loss ended a stellar season for Pennridge, which won the District One title and finished with a sparkling 18-3 record.

“This is disappointing because it’s tough to lose when you’re that close to getting to the state final, but we had a great season,” senior Skyler Ammon said. “We made the top eight in the state and we improved a lot. Overall, we did really well and I’m proud of us.”

Ammon will attend Bucks County Community College, where he is considering a major in either chemistry or business.

Junior Alex Derk is optimistic for the future.

“I feel like we have a lot of work to do, losing our outside hitter (Benscoter), but I also feel like the chemistry is still there,” he said. “I love all the guys I’m playing with. All the sophomores coming up, especially Thomas (McKinney), he’s going to be huge next year. I think we’ve got a lot of work to do, but I think we can do it.

“This season was huge for us. I didn’t get a lot of playing time, but just practicing five days a week with these guys and getting ready for next season to start, serving in games, I think my serving improved a lot, I improved a lot. All the juniors, I think we’re ready for our senior season. We’re ready to help out the underclassmen and continue the program.

“Losing last year hurt because I was going to be libero all year on JV and I would have become more consistent. Riley (Kodidek) would have had a full year of setting. That would have been huge for him. It was really rough losing that season but I think we came back and put in a lot of work and made this season great.

“This year set the bar pretty high but I think we’re prepared for the challenge and we’re excited for it.”