DEPT. OF ATHLETICS
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Volleyball Seasons Starts with a Split
August 28, 2012By Chad Rutkowski of Cardinal Stritch Catholic High School
Fostoria, OH - The Cardinal Stritch Catholic High School Volleyball team set their season standards very high under new Head Coach, Chad Rutkowski (CSCHS Class of 2004), and have been working extremely hard in practice, in the weight room, in scrimmage and with running, however, the season did not start exactly how it was planned.
On Saturday, August 25, 2012, the Cardinals faced Maumee High School under their new Head Coach, Lindsay Vannett. These schools have already seen each other in a scrimmage earlier in the season at Eastwood High School and the Cardinals split their two games with the Panthers. The Panthers jumped out to an early lead in the first game going up 11-2, and the Cardinals had a difficult time passing in their serve receive rotation 2. However, the Cardinals battled back with great consistent and solid serving and defense from Christina Pinciotti (#3, Senior) to being down 16-15 when they missed a serve into the net. The Panthers then were successful on three offsenive sets widening the gap to 19-15, before the Cardinals took one back with a powerful top-spin jump serve from Sara Turner-Smith (#7, Senior) and then missed a costly serve into the net making the score 20-15. The Panthers were successful again with aggressive serves from MacKenzie Bellman, who rattled off six straight service points to end the first game with the Cardinals losing 16-25.
Coach Rutkowski and Assistant Coach Courtney Cannon re-gathered their team and made a line-up change which proved very beneficial for the Cardinals. The Outside Hitters, Turner-Smith and Maggie Merren (#9, Freshman), were flipped in rotation and change saw significant and immediate success with both of them recording 4 kills in this set. The first points of the second game were back and forth between each squad with big kills for the Cardinals by Briyanna Axtell (#10, Senior), Ally Heyman (#8, Junior) and Jennifer Trumbull (#14, Junior), signifcantly better serve receive passing and defense from Alexi Jagielski (#4, Senior), Abby Mass (#12, Senior) and more consistent and accuracy from the setter, Alexa McCourt (#2, Junior). The Cardinals, as stated before found success, and they found it early, however, the Panthers found similar success and the match found itself tied at 14-14 before their was any moving and shaking of the score. The Cardinals and Panthers battled point for point going back and forth until the score was 21-19 in favor of the Cardinals before Tina Pinciotti and Sara Turner-Smith finished off the game with successful service attempts to pull of the close game win, 25-21.
Game three was expected to be very similar to game two, and, sure enough, it was! The two teams battled back and forth, back and forth, back and forth the entire game, and there was never a lead bigger then three for the set. Towards the end, the Cardinals found themselves up 20-19 before Elena Sokoloski for Maumee served four straight points, including one ace, to put the Panther up 23-20. The Cardianls quickly regrouped, cut the deficit to two, and then Stritch's Mass rattled off one phenomenal serve for an ace to make the score 23-23. Maumee made two quick substitutions and immeidately sided-out, finding themselve serving for the win. Samantha Fowls for the Panthers had the match winning kill to end the third and determining set, 25-23 in favor of Maumee.
The final line for the game is as follows - Maumee d. Cardinal Stritch, 2 games to 1 (25-16, 21-25, 25-23).
Stritch could not dwell on this loss for very long because they immediately needed to turn around and play host school Fostoria. The Cardinals, exhausted from their valient efforts verse Maumee, came out just going through the motions. They were successful in the first game, winning 25-17, however, the second game was not what was expected. The Fostoria Redman came out very confident and they took advantage of the Cardinals who made 18 errors in game two and suffered a loss 25-20. Again, just as similar to the Maumee match, the Cardinals regrouped, and ended up firing on a cylinders winning the third and determining set 25-14. The girls realized their mistakes in the second set and made drastic changes moving toward the win!
The final line for the game is as follows - Cardinal Stritch d. Fostoria, 2 games to 1 (25-17, 20-25, 25-14).
Also, on Saturday, August 25, 2012, the Junior Varsity program played host to Maumee and Fostoria at CSCHS and saw two huge wins, and the freshman traveled to Maumee and, unfortunately, saw two losses, however, they battled winning a set in each of their matches on Saturday.
The Cardinals travel to Delta High School to play Monday, August 27, 2012 with the freshman starting at 4:30pm, JV at 6:00pm and Varsity at approximately 7:00pm. The first home match is Thursday, August 30, 2012 vs. Swanton; JV starts at 6:00pm and Varsity will follow immediately afterwards.