CHILLICOTHE – Frankfort Adena went on the road Tuesday night to get SVC volleyball underway for the 2007 season. The Lady Warriors traveled to Unioto to face a veteran Lady Sherman squad that many thought during the preseason had the firepower to contend for this year’s conference title. In the end, this early season SVC showdown turned out to be a one-sided affair as Adena cruised to victory in straight sets 25-11, 25-19, 25-14.
Adena wasted little time taking control in game one as it recorded 10 of the first 11 points. The Lady Warriors were very sharp early as they got pinpoint passing from libero Casi Coy and Brooke Snyder. Coy led the Adena defense with 22 digs while Brooke Snyder added 12 digs. This allowed junior Ashley Jordan and senior Kristen Snyder to take control at the net, and Adena never looked back on their way to the early one game advantage.
“We came out with some good energy tonight,” Adena head coach Laura Smith said. “Our passing was a little better than it has been, and overall I think we played a solid match.”
In game two, Unioto (1-1, 0-1) fought back behind some great all-around play from senior Lauren White. White, who had eight kills on the night, sparked the Lady Shermans first with her play at the net and then with a serving ace that helped Unioto draw even in the middle of set number two. The Shermans continued to hang tough throughout the set, but Adena proved to be too much as it scored nine of the final 13 points to take a two games to none lead in the match. Unioto had some chances midway through game two; however, the defense of the two-shade blue had an answer for almost every Sherman attack.
“The thing that sticks out as the difference tonight is Adena’s floor coverage,” said Unioto’s first-year head coach Aaron Ridenour who saw his Lady Shermans defeat Logan Elm in straight sets on Monday in his Unioto debut. “Their defense just keeps everything in play, and ultimately, their ability to answer everything we did just broke our concentration towards the end of game two.”
The Lady Warriors rode this momentum into game three as they put the Lady Shermans away for good by scoring nine of game three’s final 10 points to secure the straight set win. The Unioto defense, which was led by 15 digs from Katelyn Jinks, 14 digs from Brittney Neff, and 13 digs from Jodi Finchum, continued to play hard but struggled at times to counterattack the Adena offense. Although the trio of Jordan, Snyder and sophomore Kristin Yates did produce a total of 22 kills, it also kept the Shermans on its heels and forced many Unioto errors.
Adena also got a nice all-around performance from Megan Purdin. The junior setter had 25 assists, 10 points, and 14 digs in her first career varsity start. Junior Brittney Snyder also contributed with 13 serving points including five aces.
“Our expectations coming into the year were high expectations and this does not change that,” said Coach Ridenour. “We just need to refocus and concentrate on the rest of the first league round as well as our tournament we have coming up at our place (Unioto Invitational is Saturday, September 8th starting at 9:00 AM).
The Shermans look to get back on track Thursday when they travel to Paint Valley. Adena returns home to play Zane Trace on Thursday before heading north to Lehman Catholic on Saturday morning for an eight team tournament. The bracket sets up for a possible second round match up against the defending Division III state champion in Anna High School.
SIDE NOTE: In other Scioto Valley Conference volleyball on Tuesday night, Zane Trace beat Paint Valley in straight sets 25-20, 25-15, 25-16, Huntington handled Southeastern 25-16, 25-14, 25-23, and Westfall needed four sets to beat an improved Piketon squad 25-17, 25-10, 22-25, 25-10.