On a night when Swanton setter Sofie Taylor recorded her 1,000th assist, she had plenty of help as kills came from a number of her teammates as the Bulldogs stayed unbeaten on the season with a 25-8, 25-11 and 25-14 sweep of Rossford Monday at home.
“Even though we lost six seniors from last year, we are very deep offensively,” said veteran Swanton coach Kyle Borer. “Defensively I’m trying to work different girls in and find the best rotations possible, but yeah we are very deep and we have different girls we can go to if someone is struggling that night, and I have confidence in all of them.”
Avril Roberts’ kill broke a 1-1 tie early in the first set and the Bulldogs never looked back the rest of the night.
Brooke Dockery’s shot from the right side, along with a variety of Rossford mistakes ranging from a double-hit, an attack that went long and a couple of net violations pushed Swanton up 8-3.
After Monica Pupik’s scoring-shot for Rossford, Swanton responded with a 12-0 run to put away the first set.
Katlyn Floyd scored three times, Trista Eitniear added a trio more, Dockery knocked down a couple from the angle, and Kailey Brownfield scored a pair of aces during the run.
Morgan Smith’s pair of early second-set kills, along with Bailey Arnold’s ace, helped Swanton jump up 4-2 but Natalie Martens’ push brought Rossford back even at 5-5.
Floyd put the Bulldogs back up with a tip then added another before Roberts spiked an overpass to give Swanton a 9-7 lead.
Eitniear’s change-up hit, Roberts’ stuff at the net, a block from Floyd and two Sammi Taylor aces turned that two-point lead into a 21-9 advantage.
The third set was a mix of kills from Eitniear, Smith and Roberts, along with a quadruple number of Bulldogs who nailed serving aces including both Taylor’s, Emma Operacz and Savanha Jaqua to mark up the clinching victory.
“We are trying to limit our unforced errors,” expressed Borer. “Serving is the one aspect the opponent can’t do anything about so we try to be effective and hit spots while keeping the ball in play.
“We try to be aggressive with it because we do have a few girls who like to try to put a little mustard on it serving and make it tough on a defense.
“Defensively is where we are still looking to improve the most,” explained Borer. “We have been working (at) practice trying to eliminate mistakes in serve reception and give us opportunities to get a good swing at the ball. We are definitely trying to improve our communication and work on that first pass. If we can control the ball passing, we have a setter that can give our hitters good chances to get good swings and be aggressive.”
The Dogs improved to 10-0 with a 25-12, 25-21, 18-25, 26-24 win at Patrick Henry Tuesday in Northwest Ohio Athletic League play.
Roberts finished the match with 17 kills, five blocks and three digs. Eitniear was next for the Dogs with 10 kills and four digs, while Smith added nine kills and seven digs.
On Monday the first state volleyball poll was released by the Ohio High School Volleyball Coaches Association. Swanton came in ranked 14th in Division III.
Reach Joe Blystone at firstname.lastname@example.org