NEW CARLISLE – After upsetting the No. 2 seed Benjamin Logan Lady Raiders in Saturday’s second round OHSAA D-II tournament play, the No. 6 seed Lady Wave dropped a 3-0 match in the sectional finals to the No. 4 seed Graham Lady Falcons.
“Every year we just hope to improve on something,” said second year Greenville coach Michelle Hardesty. “Last year they improved greatly overall from the season before and these 13 varsity girls came out improved again this year.”
“Volleyball is a game that they want to win at and we did a lot of that this season,” continued Hardesty. “We made some big strides in our program and just hope that we keep building interest – bringing the younger ones in.”
“Overall tonight wasn’t our best effort but overall on the season it has been one heck of an effort from this team,” said second year assistant varsity coach Jim Hardesty. “They have set a lot of records and improved on a lot of things. The juniors and sophomores have a lot to look forward to next year.”
“Give Graham credit,” he added. “They served us tough and we didn’t pass the ball very well tonight, took us out of our offense. I am very proud of our team from a standpoint of all year long they have worked hard and I don’t think it was lack of effort tonight, it was just lack of execution.”
The opening set of the night saw ties of 11, 2-2, 3-3 and 4-4 followed by three unanswered Lady Wave points to lead 7-4. The Lady Falcons battled back knotting the score at 7-7, 8-8 and 10-10 before Greenville went up 13-10, keeping the 3-point spread at 14-11 only to have Graham even the score once again at 14-14 and never look back outscoring the Lady Wave 11-6 to go up 1-0 with a 25-20 win.
Set No. 2 had the Lady Wave trailing 6-0 early before using a 7-4 run to trail the Lady Falcons by a 10-7 score. Graham took advantage of a run of their own, a 15-2 scoring binge to win 25-9 and lead 2-0 on the night.
The Lady Wave battled hard against the higher seed Lady Falcons in set No. 3 with the score tied at 1-1, 2-2, 3-3 and 5-5 and Greenville taking a 6-5 lead in what would prove to be the last lead of the 2019 season for the much improved Lady Wave volleyball program.
After getting down 6-12 the Greenville girls continued to battle closing the gap to trail by 2-points at 14-16 and 15-17 before the Lady Falcons pulled away for a 25-19 win and advance to District play.
“We continue to look forward to making the community proud of what we are doing,” Michelle Hardesty stated. “It’s a bummer that they got beat tonight.”
Four Greenville seniors made the final appearance wearing the Green and White for the Lady Wave volleyball program: Emma Klosterman, Josi Worden, Annie Hayes and Sarah Abell.
“Emma Klosterman; no one can jump like Emma can,” said Michelle Hardesty. “She just puts the ball away for us. She is going to be hard to replace.”
“Josi Worden, our labero is in a tough position,” Michelle said. “She goes out and does what we ask her to do. She has a lot of territory to cover. We are proud of the strides she has made in transitioning from an outside hitter to just a passer this year with a killer serve that has really helped our team.”
“Annie Hayes comes in and has a good visual of the court,” Michelle noted. “Annie steps up and makes smart plays.”
“Sarah Abell has worked hard to get into the lineup and has become a very versatile player, great attitude, does whatever we ask of her,” said Michelle. “She goes out and executes.”
“Every one of them has done a great job this year,” Jim Hardesty noted. “Emma led up in kills and Annie has come in and done a great job – from last year she has improved, she keeps getting better. I just can’t imagine how much better if she would continue to play from where she started to where she is now, she has done nothing but learn.”
“Sarah has done a good job doing what we ask her to do,” Jim added. “Josi has definitely sacrificed a lot going back to pass instead of being a hitter.”
The Lady Wave went into the Wednesday night OHSAA D-II sectional final sporting a 13-5 Miami Valley League (MVL) mark and an impressive 15-8 overall season record.
“We want to congratulate Franklin Monroe and Arcanum on their tournament success,” Jim Hardesty said of two Darke County teams heading to District play. “We spent a lot of time with them in the preseason scrimmaging and going to tournaments with them – we are proud of them too.”
Contact Darke County Media Sports Editor Gaylen Blosser at firstname.lastname@example.org or 937-548-3330