Penridge is ahead of Council Rock North, reaching the district finals – thereporteronline
BENZALEM – On Tuesday night, Penridge ran into several bumps on the road on which he had driven many times before.
The Rams won 3-0 over Saul Rock North, holding back a sharp blow to the Indians in the second and third sets to reach the 1-3A County Finals, the ninth appearance in the program’s district finals in 13 seasons.
“In practice, we worked hard to block, but tonight we seemed to focus on ball control,” said senior Riley Kadzidek. “After all, we just took care of the business.”
Penridge, seeded second, will meet the winner of the Upper Dublin-Neshamina match, which was to take place after the Rams match on Tuesday night in Bensalem. The district finals will take place on Thursday night at 7 a.m. back in Bensalem.
“We got off to a great start and I think it helped,” Rams coach Dave Childs said. “And every time (Rock North) made a push, we could bounce off of it and pull it out.”
Cadidek, Jude Rotunda, Tyler Johnson, Thomas McKinney and Nick Smith played key roles for Penridge, who won 25-12, 25-21, 25-20 and advanced to the championship finals. The Rams are vying for the district’s seventh crown in nine final appearances.
“As long as we get a good set, we have strikers everywhere,” Childs said. “Our environments are where they start, and they set the tone that way. Everyone can do the job – we even have guys on the bench who can do the job.
“It’s a luxury.”
This season, Penridge did not face number 6 CR North, but was able to adapt and win.
“It was good to get a pillow because they started coming back,” Kadzidek said. “After our time-outs, we just kept calm.”
The Rams won for the 17th time in 18 matches and secured a place in the states. Penridge has shown tremendous balance in everything.
“There was a bit of ups and downs tonight, but I think overall as the season goes on, you want to feel like you’re playing as well as you can,” Childs said, “and I feel like we’re moving in that direction.”
Rock North still has another rift in the states – the top three teams ahead. The Indians are battling who lost in the second semifinal on Tuesday night.
Indians coach James Quadahill of Penridge said: “They played a clean game. Their big players played well and they played in good defense. In the second set we were right there. The guys dug themselves a hole, and they know it can’t be done. Still, it was nice to see the graininess. ”
Penridge plays and feels it could be another special launch.
“After the pre-season ended and we started playing in tournaments, I think it really helped us develop as a team,” said Kadidek. “And it showed how far we can really go.”