JOHNSONBURG – Johnsonburg volleyball won 3-1 (25-21, 25-16, 20-25, 25-15) over Elk County Catholic Tuesday night at Johnsonburg Area High School.
"It's a good win for the girls against a good team," Johnsonburg coach Bill Shuey said. "They hustled and they played hard. We seemed to be jelling as a team. We still have some things that we have to fix. All in all, they played hard. We minimized our mistakes."
The first set was evenly played between the two county rivals, as both teams could not burst out to a big lead. The teams were tied at 17-all and 18-all before the Ramettes added a pair of points on a hitting error and a kill from Kiesha Dornish. After a kill from Taylor Schlimm, the Ramettes scored five of the last seven points to take the opening set 25-21.
Johnsonburg scored four of the first five points in the second set before kills from Lexie Meholic and Kirstie Wehler.
The teams traded ties at 4-all, 5-all and 6-all before the Crusaders added three out four points to take a 9-7 lead. Johnsonburg rallied with a 5-1 run with two kills from Dornish to take a 12-10 lead.
The Ramettes began to pull away and led 18-13, which prompted a timeout from ECC. Johnsonburg would finish the second set strong with a 7-3 run to take a 2-0 lead after a 25-16 second-set win.
Elk County Catholic scored three of the first four points before the Ramettes tied the set with a pair of points, capped with a Katie Galsick kill. ECC scored five points in a row to prompt a Johnsonburg timeout. The Ramettes then responded with five straight of their own to tie it up at 8-all.
Late in the third set, the two teams were tied at 16-all, 17-all, 18-all and 19-all before the Lady Crusaders would go on a 6-1 run to force a fourth set with their 25-20 win.
"ECC got on fire in the third game, they got their rhythm," Shuey said. "Their hitters started putting the ball away. It seemed like the momentum was on their side. Starting out in the fourth game, we needed to get some momentum. I thought our passing wasn't all that great. It was a lot better in the fourth. Sarah Bevacqua, she probably ran 500 miles going after some of those passes, I thought she did a good job. Once the ball got to the net, I thought our hitters did a nice job."
Elk County Catholic then had a strong start to the fourth set, sprinting out to a 5-1 lead. A Galsick kill and three service points from Chelsea Benson tied the set at 5-all. The teams then traded the next four points to leave the score at 7-all before Johnsonburg had a kill from Dornish and three points from Ramette hitter Brittany Watts. Watts had two kills and a block in a 4-0 run, which separated the Ramettes at 11-7.
"Brittany came on, we had some key blocks in the fourth game and some nice hits," Shuey said.
At 16-11, Johnsonburg scored seven more points en route to a 25-15 fourth set victory which clinched the match.
Johnsonburg is scheduled to host Punxsutawney, with junior varsity action slated for 6 p.m. Thursday. Elk County Catholic is slated to play at DuBois next Tuesday, with action starting at 6 p.m.