Kaylee Rich, of Marysville, leaps backwards for a Columbus West hit during the second set of a match in the opening round of the Ohio High School Athletic Association volleyball tournament. The Monarchs won the match in three sets.
(Journal-Tribune photo by Sam Dillon)
The Lady Monarchs of Marysville made a big splash when they entered the Ohio High School Athletic Association volleyball tournament pool on Tuesday.
The 34th-ranked Monarchs played host to No. 40 Columbus West. After three swift sets, Marysville found itself advancing to the second round.
MHS head coach Bethany Bentz gave credit of the home court and a solid connection amongst teammates for the win.
“It helps that we were at home,” she said. “It is always good to play at home, but I like that fact that they got the first match and moved forward.”
The Lady Monarchs were able to move forward, but it wasn’t until a solid hit by Kaylee Rich that gave the Monarchs a three-point edge of 11-8 in the first game and set the tone.
The Lady Cowboys tried to keep the set close, but a bevy of double hits kept widening the gap as the Monarchs pushed the score to 19-14.
Marysville closed out the set with a six-point run to take set one 25-14.
The Lady Cowboys made a solid argument for a win when they came out strong during set two.
West held a four-point lead, but good service by Sara Berkland reeled in the Lady Cowboys.
After a short MHS run, the game was knotted at 10-10.
“When we were playing a team such as we were playing, it is easy to play down at their level,” said Bentz. “I think we did play to their level and at times we played our game and hence the reason we won out in three.”
The Lady Monarchs didn’t play down at the Cowboys’ level for long.
Carissa Baker received a set from mid-court and blasted a cross-court shot over the net the helped the Monarchs advance their lead to 16-14.
West scored two more points, but those markers did not matter in the end as Marysville won the second game, 25-16.
Only one set stood between Marysville and a sweep.
The Cowboys, on their last leg, kept the score tight through the first 10 points of the game.
However, a solid hit from Jazmine Williams off Berkland’s set started an eight-point run that eventually help seal the deal for Marysville.
“The connection that we talk about it is the understanding that first we do this (set the ball) and then we do that next (hit over the net),” said Bentz. “It’s making sure that we know what each other is going to do and the trust they have in each other.”
The trust in each other led Marysville all the way to a 25-17 set and match win in opening round of Division I post season play.
Bentz believes the solid victory gives the team the motivation needed to move forward.
“I think they are ready, we face (No. 8) Olentangy on Thursday, so I think it is going to be a good day to continue to play hard and to fight and battle,” she said. “We are going to surprise a whole lot of people, because these Monarchs are so strong.”
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