VOLLEYBALL: Seneca downs Reed-Custer in two tight sets
BRAIDWOOD — Reed-Custer was faced with one of its toughest tasks of the season with its home match against Seneca on Monday night, with the Comets in need of an upset to snap a three-match losing streak.
And while the Comets played well enough to win, a few strenuous volleys and tough bounces ended two tight sets in favor of the Irish, who escaped Reed-Custer with a 2-0 victory, 25-21 and 25-22.
“I told them that that was the best we’ve played the past couple of games ... I told them that it was a good loss,” Comets coach Kelly Van Duyne said. “We just couldn’t catch up or take the lead when we needed to.”
After the Irish took the first multi-point lead of the first set at 8-5, the Comets thought they had momentum and the serve. But after scoring a pair of points, officials noticed that the Comets had an error in their rotation and substitutions, taking a point away and giving the Irish a point and the serve.
While no coach ever likes to see a miscommunication become so costly, Van Duyne said she was proud of how her team handled the adversity. From that point on for the rest of the first set, the six Comets players were out of rotation, and in turn, out of their normal positions.
“It just showed how versatile they can be,” Van Duyne said. “They can be thrown out there at any spot on the court and still play well.”
After falling behind 19-13 in the first set, the Comets climbed back in it behind stellar play up front with Shaelin Ruzich, Maggie Meyr and Ashleigh Coster, each of whom finished with three kills. They were able to cut it to as close as 23-20, but the Irish pulled away to take the set 25-21.
The second set was similar to the first. The two teams traded points early before sustaining runs on each other. From the 14th point on, the two teams found themselves five different times, including a 20-20 tie.
But again, the Irish were able to find a way to close the set out, this time by a 25-22 score.
Despite the loss, Van Duyne said that the Comets improved in every aspect of the game, with multiple players excelling in multiple areas of the court, which was best exemplified through sophomore setter Danielle Cherry, who had a team-high 14 assists and six digs, which was second on the Comets to Maddi Tiangco’s eight.
“I think that we stepped up in all aspects of the game; our serving was up, our setting was on and our hitting was good,” Van Duyne said. “We were on this roller coaster where we were really going down a bit, but tonight was on the way back up.”
The Comets will have a chance to snap their skid tonight, when they face Herscher in Interstate Eight action at 7 p.m.