ELYRIA — One bad game does not a match make.
Black River laid an egg in its third game against Columbia in the Division III sectional volleyball tournament at Elyria High last night, but bounced back to clinch a 25-19, 27-25, 11-25, 25-22 win, earning the right to play second-seeded Independence on Thursday.
“It was a series of unfortunate events in Game 3 and it was all our own fault,” said Pirates coach Courtney Deiter. “We had unforced error after unforced error. We had a lot of that in the middle of the season.”
Black River (9-14) limited its mistakes in the first two games against its Patriot Athletic Conference rival, especially late in each game when it mattered most.
In the opening game, the Raiders (7-16) led 18-16 after four service points by Rebecca Tacchite, but Black River responded by finishing the game with a 9-1 run.
Morgan Terry picked up a pair of points on a hitting error and a Makayla Koerner kill. Koerner then closed out the win with an ace, single kills by Emily Cartwright and Kayla Gardner and three kills by freshman Frances Radway.
Columbia again led late in the second game with a 23-21 advantage after a Pirate hitting error, but Black River fought off the Raiders with aces by Danielle Jenkins and Romi Smith.
Korener and Paige Lutz added kills and Black River clinched the Game-2 win when Columbia was called for a net violation to complete the 27-25 win.
The Raiders left no doubt about the third game when Sam Goode rattled off nine service points with Black River helping out with four hitting errors. Bailey Patouhas added a kill and Shelby Friedel knocked down three sets from Megan Hawke to stake Columbia to an 11-1 lead that never was closed by the Pirates.
“It was tough in that third game,” said Black River junior Danielle Jenkins, who finished the night with nine kills. “We talked a lot about getting our passes back on target and making sure our hits were going to be good. I’m glad we were able to bounce back.”
It was quite a bounce back, as the Pirates scored eight straight points after trailing 1-0.
“This game is all about who makes mistakes,” said Raiders first-year coach Tony Tahan. “Whoever makes the most errors will probably lose and no question about it. We definitely found a way to make errors in every game, even that third one that we won.
“You have to give (Black River) credit, they worked hard and were everywhere tonight. (The Pirates) played their hearts out and made fewer errors than we did tonight.”
Lutheran West 25-25-25, Wickliffe 16-21-22
Lutheran West got a little sloppy at times, but it had more than enough to beat Wickliffe 25-16, 25-21, 25-22. The fifth-seeded Longhorns have a rematch Thursday against fourth-seeded Trinity at Elyria High School at 7:30 p.m.
The Trojans beat Lutheran West in four games back on September 23rd — 25-13, 25-18, 17-25, 25-21.
“You could tell our young girls were especially nervous playing in their first tournament game,” said Longhorns coach Stephanie Rivera. “We had some broken plays and we were up and down, but that happens with a young team.”
Lutheran West used some especially long runs in the first two games to pull out the wins.
The Longhorns led 18-16 when Lexi Rivera stepped to the service line and closed out the scoring with six points on three aces and kills from Anne Kennedy, Emilie Hausmann and Carey Smith.
Lutheran West carried that momentum over scoring 11 straight with Smith at the service line as Hausmann registered five more kills and Kennedy floored three more as the ‘Horns held on for the 25-21 win.
Streaks early and late fueled Lutheran West as it ran out to a 6-1 lead with Abby DeSimpelare serving and freshman Margaux Thompson closed out the game with three points, including an ace.
Contact James Brady at 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lutheran West 25-25-25, Wickliffe 16-21-22
HITTING: W: Brittany Fortkamp 6 kills, Rachel Thomeier 4 kills. LW: Emile Hausmann 22 of 26, 12 kills, Margaux Thompson 22 of 26, 11 kills, Anne Kennedy 14 of 14, 8 kills.
SETTING: W: Cassie Gricar 5 assists, Gina Ciasullo 7 assists. LW: Sarah Ernst 86 of 89, 33 assists.
SERVING: W: Gricar 4 aces, Brooke Sherdey 2 aces. LW: Carey Smith 13 points 3 aces, Kennedy 11 points 4 aces.
DIGS: W: Thomeier 15, Alexis Gricar 19. LW: Thompson 11, Lexi Rivera 10, Carey Smith 7, Abby DeSimpelare 7.
BLOCKS: W: Mariah Poeter 1, Gina Ciasullo 2. LW: Kennedy 3, Gabby Schultz 2.5, DeSimpelare 1.
Black River 25-27-11-25, Columbia 19-25-25-22
HITTING: C: Shelby Friedel 10 kills, Rebecca Tacchite 8 kills. BR: Makayla Koerner 13 kills, Danielle Jenkins 9 kills, Frances Radway 6 kills.
SETTING: C: Megan Hawke 27 assists. BR: Emily Cartwright 33 assists.
SERVING: C: Sam Goode 17 points. BR: Jamie Hozan 11 points, Kayla Gardner 9 points, Jenkins 7 points.
DIGS: BR: Hozan 20, Koerner 13, Morgan Terry 10.
BLOCKS: C: Tacchite 6. BR: Jenkins 4, Cartwright 3.