BRADFORD – The Tri-Village volleyball team went to Bradford Thursday evening and beat the Lady Railroaders 25-23, 23-25, 25-13, 25-17 in a Cross County Conference match.
Tuesday’s match included several momentum swings, but in the end Tri-Village was able to handle them better and came out on top.
“They played very well,” Tri-Village coach Eric Burkhart said. “I was very happy with them. They played as a team. We had a little rough part in there in the second game with ball control, but after that timeout we picked it back up and finished it off.”
Tri-Village started off well in the opening game and took an early 9-4 lead. The Lady Patriots increased their lead to as many as eight points at 19-11, but Bradford didn’t give in easily.
The Railroaders fought back and tied the game at 22-22. After Tri-Village regained the lead at 23-22, Bradford tied it again. Tri-Village then scored the next two points and won 25-23 to go up 1-0 in the match.
The second set started off very similar to the first with Tri-Village taking an early 9-2 lead.
Bradford again fought back and tied the game at 14-14. From there the teams went back and forth with ties at 15-15, 16-16- 17-17, 18-18, 19-19 and 21-21.
“Bradford is a scrappy team,” Burkhart said. “There was probably three or four in that second or third game that they dug that I was really impressed with. They were just scrappy. On some that should have been kills, they got them up.”
Unlike the first game, this time Bradford jumped ahead and won the game 25-23 to even the match at one game apiece.
“We tried out some new things, and some of them didn’t pan out quite the way I wanted to,” Bradford coach Maddie Armstrong said. “But we definitely made some gains. We’re a lot faster than we normally are, which we’ve been working on. So I think that was good, but we’re just going to keep adjusting things until we get it right.”
Tri-Village again jumped out to an early lead in the third set. From a 3-3 tie Tri-Village went on a 9-0 run to take a 12-3 lead. Unlike the first two games Bradford couldn’t bounce back, though, and Tri-Village won 25-13 to go up two games to one.
Tri-Village switched up its lineup Tuesday and moved Allie Downing to setter, which seems to have helped the Patriots, Burkhart said.
“She’s got some good hands so I think that’s helped give us some more ball control, which will allow us to get some more hits,” he said.
Bradford got its best start of the night in the fourth set as the Railroaders took an early lead. However, Tri-Village scored six consecutive points to turn a 6-3 deficit into a 9-6 lead.
“We get in ruts, but one thing we’ve been working on is getting out of them. And they’re really good at not giving up and having their own confidence,” Armstrong said. “We’ve been working on how to kind of fix the roller coaster. We do tend to roller coaster a little bit. But I think they’re getting more confidence. That’s helping less and less often.”
After Tri-Village took the lead, the Patriots stayed ahead of Bradford and went on to win 25-17 to win the match 3-1.
“As long as we get better each game, I’m happy with us,” Burkhart said. “And I see positives in every game that we’ve done, but it showed tonight that we can put it together when we need to.”