Wolverines Battle, but Fall to Crusaders

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Sheffield's Emily Foster. File photo by Cody Elms.

SHEFFIELD, Pa. – Coming off a dominating win over Forest Area a week ago, a well-rested Wolverines team fell in three sets during a hard-fought match Thursday night to Elk County Catholic (12-25, 16-25, 12-25).

Rewatch the match:

“I thought that our girls were battling the whole time,” said Sheffield Head Coach Melissa Lemay. “I don’t think that they quit. I think that we shocked Elk County after they rolled over Kane, I think they probably thought they were going to roll over Sheffield too. And they gave them a match. That’s what I asked them to do. Play your best, every time, every ball, all out.”

The Wolverines were able to pull even in each set with the Crusaders, but Elk County’s consistently strong play meant that Sheffield had no room for errors.

“Elk County is always very strong,” said Lemay. “They’re hard hitters. When they hit the ball hard and we don’t pass well, then we give them free balls and they just continue to run their offense. For us, we need to continue to pass well and run our offense. We need to be able to give it to them.”

Big runs at the end of the first and third sets allowed the Crusaders to pull away.

“We started each set a little back on our heels and trading points back and forth,” ECC coach Tricia Bauer said. “But we picked it up about halfway through each game and we were able to walk away with a good road win.”

For the Crusaders, Tori Newton had 10 kills, Reagan Bauer had 8 kills, 6 aces, and 1 block, Madison Marzullo had 7 kills and 3 blocks and Kiri Emmert had 26 assists.

Kassidy Orinko had eight kills, three blocks, and 13 digs. Emily Foster added six digs and four blocks, while Kadence Steffan was solid with 12 assists and 12 digs. Peyton Wotorson had nine digs and Lexi Goldthwaite had three aces.

“We’re still playing with our defense, and who is going to play in the back row,” said Lemay. “I’m still trying to figure out who works best together in the back row. Sometimes we take people out to try something else, who might work better with the group that’s out there.”

Sheffield falls to 2-3 on the year and will travel to Allegheny-Clarion Valley Saturday morning.