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Prep girls capture sixth title against tough Molloy

Molloy's Erica Byrne serves the ball against St. Francis Prep in the CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens final.
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St. Francis Prep capturing its sixth-straight diocesan title further cements its place as one of New York City’s most accomplished dynasties. This is a fact senior outside hitter Kelly Flynn has become accustomed to and still enjoys hearing even after her third-straight crown.

“Winning never gets old. We’re used to it now,” she said. “A lot of us have been playing together on this team for three years now. We wanted to finish strong in our senior year.”

It didn’t come as easy as it might have looked. Host and No. 2 Archbishop Molloy pushed the No. 1 Terriers in the first and third sets, but they were able to hold on for a 26-24, 25-17, 25-22 victory in the CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens final Monday night. It was the type of success St. Francis Prep Coach Kevin Colucci expected from this group from the beginning.

“From the second these girls walked into the high school three or four years ago, I knew they would be something special,” he said. “It’s been awesome to coach these girls. They deserve this.”

From the first serve, it was obvious the Terriers were in championship form. Flynn blasted clutch shot after clutch shot whenever Molloy threatened on her way to a game-high 14 kills. Her dominance at the net was unmatched by Molloy, but her sheepish recognition of her ability is as striking as her on-court intensity.

“I did all right, I guess,” she said in-between giggles. “My job is to put the ball over the net and that’s what I did.”

Fellow SFP seniors Kendra McCalla and Kiara Pierre also made themselves heard with 22 and 10 assists respectively. Pierre contributed eight kills and three aces also. In addition, Jaclyn LaForgia returned after missing the semifinals against Mary Louis with a head injury and recorded six kills.

“She was dying to get out there and play last time out,” Colucci said of LaForgia. “She was sorely missed and it was great to have her back.”

While the Terriers (14-0) move on, Molloy (10-4), who suffered all four of their losses at the hands of SFP, was left wondering what could have been. Even though the score sheet showed a loss in straight sets, the Stanners pushed their rival. Jenna Hoffman recorded 14 digs and Lauren Pagan and Emily Rabot combined for seven kills.

Next on the schedule for the Terriers is the state tournament, which will take place at St. Anthony’s (L.I.) Saturday at 3 p.m. Colucci will embrace the present tonight, but quickly turn his focus to the future. His team lost in the Class AA final last season.

“Our focus is now on states,” Colucci said. “And this group has a lot of elements needed to be successful.”

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