ST. PAUL Considering Country Christian has placed third in the Casco League the past few years, it came as no shock to St. Paul when the Cougars came to life after the Bucks cruised to relatively easy 25-10 and 25-16 wins in the first two sets of their early-season tilt Friday at St. Paul High School.
But knowing that Country Christian was capable of playing much better and actually closing out the Cougars while they were in form proved to be two very different things, as the visitors evened the match 2-2 by taking the third and fourth sets 25-18 and 26-24, respectively.
Undeterred by the swing in momentum, the Bucks steadied themselves and won the fifth and deciding set 15-8 to pull out the 3-2 win and remain unbeaten on the young season.
Country took awhile to warm up, head coach Lesli Hiller said. They have a few good hitters/blockers that started to play in game three. Country looks to be in the top three again this year so we werent too surprised when they started fighting for it.
Hiller said her team also shot itself in the foot by missing its first serve four times in a row and that each time the Cougars took advantage by scoring a couple points. In addition, the Bucks had twice as many attack errors (10) combined in the third and fourth sets than they did over the course of the first two (five).
Part of regaining control of the match in the fifth set was eliminating those errors, which the Bucks (2-0 overall, 2-0 Casco League) did on both fronts, committing only one attack error.
Senior middle blocker Delaney Sump was dominant at the net, recording a game-high 20 kills to go along with one stuff block and two block assists and no block errors.
Sara Pierson and Emma Coleman added six kills apiece as St. Paul hit .264 as a team. Alex Coleman recorded nine aces on 26 attempts with one error to buttress the offense, which was fueled by Kennedy Smiths 23 assists.
Once again, the Bucks were solid at the back, as Cameron Stone finished with 12 digs and Carolina Ruvalcaba six.
Beginning with a road contest at Crosshill Christian Tuesday, St. Paul embarked on a much busier schedule this week, which will include road matches at Willamette Valley Christian Wednesday, rival Perrydale Thursday and non-conference opponent Dufur Saturday.
Falls City 3, C.S. Lewis Academy 0 The Watchmen suffered a serious case of first-game jitters and struggled to acclimate to the low ceiling at Falls City High School on Sept. 10. Lana Friedrich led C.S. Lewis with nine kills, as the Mountaineers prevailed 25-16, 25-18, 25-19.
Perrydale 3, Veritas 2 The Vanguard pushed the defending Casco-League champions to the brink before falling 14-25, 25-23, 25-10, 20-25, 15-12 at home on Sept. 10. Veritas player Karly Charbonneau suffered a broken nose and concussion in the fourth set, but libero Rebekah Stoltzfus filled her role quite well according to head coach Rachel Schippers. Setter Natalie Anderson had nine digs, seven aces and five kills to go along with her 21 assists. Brianna Stoppa paced the team with 11 kills.
Veritas 3, Willamette Valley Christian 0 Adjusting well to a new lineup, the Vanguard started strong and never let up to prevail 25-14, 25-21, 25-16 on the road Sept. 12. Tess Johnson and Stoppa led the offense with eight and seven kills respectively, with Anderson handing out 23 assists and finishing four kills. Stoltzfus and Lydia Hall were 100 percent from the service line, tallying three aces apiece.
C.S. Lewis Academy 2, Long Creek/Ukiah 0 The Watchmen were far more confident in the opening match of their own round-robin tournament on Saturday, besting the Mountaineers 25-10, 25-16 to give head coach Vince Swagerty his first win as C.S. Lewis coach. Friedrich led the team again with five kills.
C.S. Lewis Academy 2, Mohawk 0 Hannah Schmeltzer posted a team-high 9 kills as the Watchmen won 25-17, 25-10. As a team, C.S. Lewis amassed11 aces with just one error on 44 attempts for a .977 serve percentage.
N. Clackamas Christian 2, C.S. Lewis Academy The Saints prevailed 25-20, 14-25, 15-3 to take the tournament title. Friedrich finished with 10 kills against just one attack error in 14 attempts to post a .643 hitting percentage for the match.
Umpqua Valley Christian 2, C.S. Lewis Academy 0 Playing in their first game of the season on Friday, the Watchmen found it difficult to put pressure on the Monarchs, whom first-year head coach Mike Reimer said could be the top 1A team in the state.
C.S. Lewis Academy 5, Jefferson 1 Forward Katelyn Reimer netted a hat trick to help deliver her fathers first win as coach of the Watchmen. Sam Swan assisted on all three of Reimers goals and notched an unassisted goal of his own, while younger brother Isaak Swan opened the scoring.
Boys water polo
Newberg 15, Hillsboro 2 Spencer McMaster led the offensive onslaught with four goals and Eric Wilson added three. Corbin Day scored twice and swiped a team-high five steals. David Flores Juarez and Drew Killion also scored two goals apiece, with Kyle Hansen blocking nine of the 10 shots he faced in goal.
Newberg 16, Lakeridge 3 Nine different Tiger players score in the victory, paced by Landry Saunders four goals. Craig Beecher notched three, with McMaster and Zach Schrage chipping in with two apiece. As a team, Newberg collected 14 earned ejections in a dominant performance.