The pregame warmup didn’t give any notice of things to come.
The tall Olmsted Falls girls, sparked by Lexi Lombardo’s first three kills Thursday, swept Amherst in a 3-0 series.
Following Lombardo’s lead, Bulldogs Kacie Burton and Paige Tymke got in on the action with two and one kills respectively. Lombardo finished the set with seven kills and a block point.
The Lady Comets had a difficult time finding a counter to the vigorous offense of the Bulldogs. Six Comets had kills in the first game but only one each, unable to match the Bulldogs in spite of four faults on serve by Olmsted Falls.
The score was 25-14.
Amherst displayed the making of a comeback in the second game. Ashley Makruski and Tory Small teamed up with three kills each to keep the Comets close. Sarah Farley and Symone Williams also had a kill apiece.
But the Bulldogs defense was as formidable as ever. Lombardo had three kills and teammate Katie Edgington stepped up with four while Tymke added another to again best Amherst 25-14.
Small and London Voss contributed block points but their effort was cancelled out by six aces, three served by Lombardo.
Another team as heavy with sophomores as Amherst may have given up but that isn’t how the Amherst program works. The girls maintained their spirit and battled the Bulldogs every step of play of the third set.
Makruski led her team with three kills as Alana Carrion chipped in two and Comets Small, Farley, and Voss hit for one each.
Unfortunately, they ran into the wall that is Lombardo. The Comets pulled within three points several times but could not overcome the Bulldogs’ momentum as Lombardo made seven kills, Edgington four, Chase Filicko three, and one came from Tymke.
Olmsted Falls’ strength is at the net. They work well receiving and setter Kacie Burton has a nearly lateral set that is extremely difficult to defend against.
The final game ended 25-17 as Amherst suffered its first defeat this season.
It remains to be seen if this year will be a repeat of 2014. Last year Amherst and Olmsted Falls split their series.
Carl Sullenberger can be reached at email@example.com.
Photos by Carl Sullenberger | Amherst News-Times Sophomore Tory Small blasts one of her five kills and two block points on Thursday against the defense of Chase Filicko and Katie Edgington. Small’s efforts were for naught as Amherst went down 3-0 to the Olmsted Falls Bulldogs.