By Rob Kiser
The Lehman and Piqua volleyball teams had both opened the season with wins.
On Tuesday night at Garbry Gymnasium, it was Lehman who kept its momentum going with a 25-13, 25-10, 25-15 win over the Lady Indians.
“I thought we played much better tonight,” Lehman coach Greg Snipes, whose team had rallied for a five-set win over Vandalia-Butler Saturday, said. “Saturday, we missed a lot of serves and just gave ourselves no chance to win points. Tonight, I thought we did a much better job with our serving, but we were still aggressive.”
For Piqua, it was the inability to put any kind of run together throughout the match.
“We seemed to start out pretty well,” Piqua coach Kaila Cook said. “But, as soon as Lehman put together three points or more (in a row), they just seemed to keep going. We had a lot of unforced errors.”
In a sign of things to come in the opening set, Madeline Smith broke a 3-3 deadlock by serving five straight points to make it 8-3 for the Lady Cavaliers. Sidney Chapman and Allie Hall had kills during the run, which Smith finished with an ace.
“We definitely got down early the first game,” Cook said.
Lehman road that momentum the rest of the set.
“Madeline (Smith) had a nice run there,” Snipes said.
In the second set, there were a series of sideouts and Piqua was within 12-8 when Marianne Hissong stepped to the service line.
She had three aces in an 8-point run and was aided by kills by Chapman and Hall as Lehman took a 20-8 and lead and quickly finished off the set.
“Marianne (Hissong) had a big run there,” Snipes said. “It seemed like the second and third sets, we started a little slowly and then picked things up.”
In the third set, Piqua was as close as 7-5, before Lehman would stretch the lead to 20-10.
Chapman had five kills during the run, while McFarland had a kill at 18-10 and followed it with a tip on Hall’s serve.
Piqua got as close as 21-15 on a block by Ashley Ho, before Lehman scored the final four points, including a kill by McFarland and another by Chapman to end it.
Sidney Chapman had 13 kills for the Lady Cavaliers, while McFarland added 13 kills and Hall added three.
Smith dished out 24 assists and led the defense with 13 digs.
Madison Hussey added 10 digs, Andrea Sehlhorst had eight and Hissong served four aces.
“Everyone knows Sidney (Chapman) is our go-to hitter,” Snipes said. “The good thing tonight was the way we had some other hitters step up and Madeline (Smith) did a nice job distributing the ball around.”
For Piqua, Cassidy Sullenberger had 23 assists, seven digs and two aces; while Haley Michael and Ho both had two blocks.
Kelsey Magoteaux led the defense with 10 digs.
Piqua was coming off a 23-25, 25-22, 25-14, 25-18 win over Milton-Union on Monday.
Mikayla Schaffner had 11 kills, while Ho added four blocks.
Sullenberger dished out 30 assists and Carly Brown served eight aces.
“The thing I was happy about in the Milton-Union match was we got better with every set,” Cook said. “That is why I was happy (with the comeback) in the third set. We have a young team and the goal is to just keep getting better.”
The JV and freshman both improved to 2-0 Tuesday.
The JVs beat Lehman, while the freshman defeated Springfield.
Piqua will host Springboro Thursday, while Lehman has a week off before traveling to Marion Local Tuesday.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.