Karen Kase | The Gazette
WADSWORTH — It didn’t take long for the Wadsworth volleyball team to bear down against Cloverleaf in the Suburban League opener Tuesday night.
The powerful and proven Grizzlies jumped to a 7-1 lead and never looked back, defeating the Colts 25-11, 25-15, 25-10.
The victory extended three-time defending league champion Wadsworth’s SL win streak to 43, which dates back to when Jill Klingbeil took over as coach.
“This was an important win, especially early on in the season and to start off Suburban League play,” Klingbeil said. “We go in with goals each year, and tonight was the first step. Everyone contributed to a solid team effort.”
With five players standing at least 5-foot-10, Wadsworth (3-1, 1-0) held an advantage at the net and struck from all angles to secure the win.
Outside hitters Jodi Johnson (8 kills) and Peyton Booth (7) led a strong, balanced attack, while junior setters Rachel Pressley and Maria Sansonetti combined for 16 assists. Up front, senior middle hitter Ciera Koons posted five blocks.
“We came into the game really focused and determined to bring the fire,” said Johnson, a sophomore and returning letterwinner. “We all came out hitting and swinging. Everyone was finding ways to contribute. We all know our roles and did our jobs, and that helped the whole team out. We played strong and unified.”
Added Klingbeil: “Our ball control helped us tonight. We didn’t shank passes. Our hitters were on and we didn’t have a lot of hitting errors. If you can pass and hit, that can make or break a team. Blocking is something we expect each night, and I thought it was pretty good tonight.”
Booth, a senior tri-captain and three-year starter, was all over the court and also impacted the game with her serve. She tallied 13 points on the night, including an ace.
The Colts (2-1, 0-1) committed a host of errors, but settled down in Game 2 behind the steady play of senior Jessie Lindemeyer, who had 11 of her team’s 19 digs. Sophomore Cheyenne Rose recorded six assists and senior Kendal Wilde added a team-high four kills.
“Volleyball is a game of errors,” Cloverleaf coach Jim Vaughn said. “I felt we just made a ton of errors, and a lot of them were unforced. Wadsworth has some great players, but we made too many plays where they didn’t even have to touch the ball. We made it fairly easy on them tonight.”
“A game like this can tell you what your team is made of. We talked in the huddle about how we need to deal with adversity and rebound from this kind of performance. We will know what type of team we are after tomorrow’s practice. Clearly, we have some work to do to keep getting better.”
Wadsworth defeated Cloverleaf in the junior varsity match 25-10, 25-8.
Contact Karen Kase at email@example.com.