Robinson senior middle blocker Cara Cunningham will play for Villanova University.
Photo by Craig Sterbutzel.
After 6-foot-4 Robinson middle blocker Cara Cunningham stuffed a pair of Lake Braddock attacks, Bruins head coach Aubrey Eaton issued a warning to her players from the bench.
“Watch out for No. 1,” Eaton said of Cunningham. “Watch out for her.”
Cunningham, who will play for Villanova University, was one of several Rams who stood out during their Sept. 16 match as the Robinson volleyball team overcame any rust from a 12-day layoff to beat Lake Braddock 3-0 (25-22, 25-19, 25-19) at Robinson Secondary School.
Cunningham finished with nine kills, two solo blocks and four block assists.
“She’s a really good defensive middle,” Robinson head coach Jill Cross said. “She’s such a weapon.”
Robinson lost in five sets to Woodson on Sept. 3 and hadn’t played since. Lake Braddock scored the first six points of Monday’s match, but once Robinson settled in, the Rams took care of business, beating the Bruins in straight sets.
“Once we started picking it up,” Cunningham said, “obviously, it carried through.”
The Rams featured a balanced attack. Robinson junior Symone Richardson finished with 10 kills and sophomore Maria Muzzio had nine kills. Senior Idil Yonis had four aces.
“It’s nice to be able to look to anyone at any given point. Our outsides are hitting well, our middles are hitting well. … It keeps defenses off balance.”
--- Robinson volleyball coach Jill Cross
“It’s nice to be able to look to anyone at any given point,” Cross said. “Our outsides are hitting well, our middles are hitting well. … It keeps defenses off balance.”
Robinson scored five of the final six points to win the opener, including kills by Richardson, Muzzio and junior Abby Nejako. The Rams opened a 17-10 lead in the second set and cruised to victory. In the third set, Robinson used an early 7-0 run to take a 10-6 lead it would not relinquish.
Lake Braddock senior Mariah McKenrick finished with a teamhigh nine kills. Senior Jenny Hammersley had six kills, junior Jenn Stoddard had five and junior Rachel Tuck and senior Courtney Farmer each had four.
The loss dropped Lake Braddock’s record to 6-3. The Bruins will travel to face Edison at 7:15 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 19.Robinson improved to 2-1 and will compete in a tournament on Saturday, Sept. 21.
“I think the Rams are definitely a team to watch for the season,” Cunningham said. “We have a lot of heart and a lot of passion for the sport. The chemistry with this group, specifically, is unparalleled. We are a very special group and I think that we can do very big things.”