Swanton put a bow on an undefeated week with a 25-14, 25-23, 25-16 home win over Gibsonburg Saturday morning.
The Bulldogs broke a 3-3 tie in the first game, rallying off seven straight points to gain the early advantage.
A Golden Bear blocking error, Sammi Taylor’s ace for Swanton, and two more errors by the visitors gave the Dogs a 7-3 lead. Kailey Brownfield then shot one from the left side, Katlyn Floyd followed with a kill and a Gibsonburg miscue made it 10-3.
At the end of the set, they scored four straight points to seal it. Brownfield’s left-side kill, an ace for Sammi Taylor, and two Golden Bear errors handed Swanton a 25-14 win in set one.
“The first set we played from ahead and (got) kind of comfortable. Ball control was good and we were able to attack different areas. We weren’t hitting the way I would like us to, but we finished that set off 25-14. So that was pretty solid effort,” said Swanton coach Kyle Borer.
The Dogs led by as many as six in the second before the Bears showed some mettle.
A pair of miscues by Gibsonburg — one a hitting error and the other a net violation — helped extend Swanton’s lead at 20-16. However, the Bears came back to tie it.
Katie Hovis scored from the left side and Mariana Alejandro’s ace around two Bulldog hitting errors knotted it at 20. The two squads continued to alternate points until with it tied at 23, Avril Roberts scored from the middle for Swanton and a double hit by Gibsonburg ended it, giving the Dogs a two-set advantage.
“We used some different lineups in there. Tried to get some girls that play JV and some different positioning, so we’re prepared for different things down the road,” explained Borer of the second set. “So I was mixing things up. And, not that that did anything, but we just (were) sloppy defensively and we weren’t controlling the ball as much as we need to.
“I’ll give them (Gibsonburg) credit, we were getting some good swings here and there and they were digging them up. And making us play again and again.”
The third set was neck and neck early on, even tied 8-8 following a Bulldog error. The Dogs reclaimed the lead from there with back-to-back kills from Floyd.
Trista Eitniear tacked on a left-side kill for the Dogs, but Camren Krotzer answered from the right side for the Bears.
Sophie Taylor came back for Swanton with a right-side kill, Floyd an ace, then two Golden Bear errors made it a 15-9 difference.
The Dogs would only extend their lead from that point on, holding on for the 25-16 win and sweep of Gibsonburg.
Despite the win, coach Borer observed some things he will look for his team to improve upon.
“Our serve reception is one area we’re trying to work on,” said Borer. “Defensively, we got to be scrappier and play a little harder defensively. And be in better position. Those are the kind of things we’re looking at us improving from — especially from Thursday’s match, when we played Delta here.”
Roberts paced the Dogs with 10 kills, three digs, and a block. Floyd added eight kills and a pair of aces.
Against Delta on Thursday, the Bulldogs won in five sets, 16-25, 25-23, 25-20, 20-25, 15-10.
Roberts and Floyd had 14 kills apiece to pace Swanton. Floyd also added five blocks.
Reagan Rouleau paced the Panthers with 14 kills and 11 blocks. Brooklyn Wymer notched 11 kills.
Swanton, who moved to 8-0 following the win over Gibsonburg, hosted Rossford Monday and travels to Patrick Henry Tuesday. They round out the week with a home match versus Fairview Thursday and on the road against Lake on Saturday.