The Ridgway Lady Elkers captured the 2011 Elk County Volleyball Tournament Saturday afternoon at the Elk County Catholic High School gymnasium.
The Lady Elkers won the 15th annual event by defeating the ECCHS Lady Crusaders two games to one in the best-of-three finals.
In the consolation game, the Johnsonburg Ramettes took third place by defeating the St. Marys Area Lady Dutch 30-24.
In pool play, Elk Catholic finished the morning play with a 5-1 record. Ridgway was 4-2, while the Ramettes were 3-3 and the Lady Dutch 0-6.
In the championship match, Ridgway took the first game 25-23, while Elk took the second game 25-15. The Lady Elkers won the deciding game by a 15-12 margin.
“This was a pretty exciting win for us,” said Ridgway coach Janet Redmond. “We finished second the last two years and we wanted first place this year.”
“All the girls did a tremendous job hitting. They all played well, Maria Buhler, Katie Oknefski, Erika Thorwart, Nicole Breier and Ellie Woodford, our setter. They played well all the way around.”
“We had a tough schedule this week. We were coming off our Johnsonburg match, where we did an excellent job. I am so proud of the team. They wanted this and they wanted to conquer and they did,” added Redmond.
In the first game, Elk Catholic moved out to a 6-2 lead. The Lady Elkers were able to even the game at 9-9 with Buhler serving. The teams traded points back and forth as the game was tied at 21, with ECC getting the serve. Ridgway got the serve back on a kill by Dani Shirey. With Breier serving, the Lady Elkers took a 24-22 lead. ECC got the serve back to close to within 24-23. The final point of the game came off an ECC block, giving the Lady Elkers game one, 25-23.
The second game found Elk Catholic moving out to an 11-5 lead on an ace by Jessie Ginther. The next serve went out of bounds, with Schlimm giving the serve back to ECC with a kill, 12-6. With Schlimm serving, Ridgway was called for four hits, 13-6. A kill by Breier made it 13-7. With Taylor DaCanal serving, Elk Catholic moved out to an 18-7 lead. Carli Schneider got a block and a kill and Lexie Meholic a kill during that run. A carry gave the serve back to Ridgway. The Lady Crusaders went on to win the game 25-15.
The Lady Crusaders opened the third game by taking a 4-3 lead. The Lady Elkers got the serve back at 5-3. With Oknefski serving, Ridgway went up 6-5. The teams traded points back and forth with Breier’s kill, giving Ridgway the 8-7 lead. The Lady Elkers got the serve back, leading 9-8. With Breier serving, Ridgway went up 12-8. ECC got the serve back at 12-9. A carry on Ridgway and a kill by Meholic cut the Lady Elker lead to 13-10. The Lady Crusaders closed to within 14-12. With Woodford serving, the Lady Elkers won the deciding point, with ECC’s shot going out of bounds as the Lady Elkers won the game 15-12 to win the tournament.
“Ridgway played well today. We committed way too many unforced errors, 33 to be exact,” said ECCHS coach Diane Gies.
“Ridgway made us make those mistakes. We have to get back to work at practice on Monday,” she added.
Ridgway travels to Bradford on Tuesday, while Elk Catholic travels to Kane. Junior varsity action at both sites begins at 6 p.m., with varsity to follow.