Before hosting East Hampton in the opening round of the Suffolk County Division II playoffs on Monday night, the Eastport South Manor boys volleyball team split its final two matches of the regular season. After falling, 3-1, at home to Lindenhurst on October 29, the Sharks beat Ward Melville, 3-0, on their home turf the next day.
The win over Ward Melville assured ESM of the top seed in the county playoffs. The Sharks won 25-19, 25-19 and 25-13. ESM senior Jon Suarez had 17 kills, junior Tyler Brandow collected 10 kills and 13 digs, and senior Eric Ferrante finished with 23 assists.
In the loss to Lindenhurst, ESM won the first set, 25-14, but then dropped the next three sets, 25-21, 25-15 and 25-17.
“We started to break down with our serving, and then our passing soon followed,” ESM head coach Bruce Stiriz said. “That was a match where I thought we were going to turn a corner, but we couldn’t stop their middle attack.”
Suarez led the team with 16 kills while Ferrante made 18 assists in the loss. Brandow had 11 digs.
ESM finished the regular season with an 8-6 record in the division, 8-7 overall, with 121.63 power points, which was good enough for sixth place in all of Suffolk County.
The Hurricanes played tough at playoff-bound Sayville in their final match of the season on October 29 before eventually losing, 3-1, to the Golden Flashes.
Sayville won the first two sets, 27-25 and 25-11. The Canes came back to win the third set, 26-24, before dropping the fourth and decisive set, 25-21.
The victory in the third set was the first for the Canes since a 3-2 loss to Shoreham/Wading River on October 9.
Westhampton Beach finished the season 1-13.
The Lady Baymen lost their final meet of the season, 124.95-77.55, at William Floyd on October 29. The loss dropped Hampton Bays to 2-5 in League III, 3-7 overall.
The Section XI Team Championships were scheduled for Tuesday and the individual championships are set for Friday at Babylon High School and begin at 4:30 p.m.