By Drew Terhall
NEW MADISON — It was a tournament type game for Tri-Village High School volleyball on Oct. 10. The Lady Patriots hosted Kenton Ridge High School the day after the volleyball bracket was announced.
Tri-Village fell in five sets to the now 17-2 Cougars team. Head coach Chris Brewer said his team took a step forward against a tough team. They are starting to play better volleyball at just the right time.
“We were able to serve tough and get them out of system. They were able to exploit some of the weaknesses we have,” Brewer said. “But when we’re on, just like in games one, two at times, three and starting off in game four, we’re going to be hard to beat if we can channel that play.”
Both teams had their offense humming in the first set. The teams went back and forth, forcing the defense to shuffle around and finding the open spaces for the kill.
The serving game for Tri-Village gave them the much needed edge over Kenton Ridge to get the set win. The Lady Patriots won 25-19 in the first set.
The second set started out the same. Both offenses were still in their groove. The Cougars started to gain momentum with their serving. Tri-Village had their struggles with serve receive and couldn’t get any rallies going.
Kenton Ridge took the second set, 25-20, and tied the match at one set a piece.
The third set seemed like it was all Kenton Ridge. They had a 14-5 lead with Tri-Village continuing to struggle with their serve receive. The ball wasn’t bouncing Tri-Village’s way and the team seemed off.
But the Lady Patriots kept fighting. They strung together runs and the offense got rolling once the team started to figure out their defense. Late in the set, Tri-Village took their first lead of the set at 24-23. They capped off the comeback with a 25-23 win.
Tri-Village rode the momentum into the fourth set and started out with the lead. But Kenton Ridge came back with a vengeance. Their offense started to give the Lady Patriots problems again and they gained the momentum in the second half of the fourth set and in the fifth set.
The Cougars won the fourth set, 25-19. They then went on to take the fifth set away from Tri-Village, 15-8.
It was the last home game for the Lady Patriot seniors. Brewer said they all stepped up this year after they were in the shadows of the seven seniors they had last year.
“These seniors are going to be missed. You can see how much they love playing and how hard they worked out there tonight. There’s nothing on the line here, we’ve already done tournament draw and the conference is kind of out. I’m glad to see them play like that, just volleyball,” Brewer said.
He also said the stat sheet should show a total team effort in the game. A lot of the seniors helped the team stay in this match.
Brewer said his senior libero, Nevaeh Reigelsperger, helped the team in the third set with her serving. Senior Morgan Hunt had some key kills late in sets and was the vocal leader on the court. Senior setter Shelby Mintekenbaugh got the offense on track.
Brewer said the team still has to work on their confidence and clean up their passing for the tournament. They allowed Kenton Ridge to get on some easy runs.
They do have a game at Preble Shawnee on Oct. 11. Brewer is hoping the team will come out with the same energy as this game, but with a little more consistency.
“I’m hoping we can channel some of this energy into that game,” Brewer said.
Contact Daily Advocate sports editor Drew Terhall at [email protected]