A 3-0 match isn’t a bad way for the Lady Comets to start the volleyball season.
“All in all, opening up this season with a lot of new kids, young kids, I was very pleased with the way we started,” said coach Laurie Cogan after Tuesday’s season opener against North Ridgeville.
“They all know what they have to contribute in order for us to be successful as a team. I thought whether it was young players or returning letter-winners, they all did what I expected with their development at this point,” she said.
Led by the driving hits of Ashley Makruski, Amherst turned the first set into a 25-10 demonstration of power volleyball.
Symone Williams, Alana Carrion, Sarah Farley, Tory Small and London Voss all added kills to the score.
There was also finesse, blocking by Small and Farley, and outstanding defense under the leadership of Madison Cruzado.
“Blocking, I thought, was exceptional tonight. Ashley did really, really well. She kept hitting balls that had a little energy on them,” said Cogan. “When they tried to go to their soft game, Madison Cruzado made sure none of that hit the floor. I think she took part of their offense away.”
Set two was a rerun of the first with another 25-10 finish.
Makruski dominated at the net. She was backed by the vigorous blocking of Small, Farley, Voss, and Carrion. Small, Carrion, and Farley all made block points.
Such a great start leads to an inevitable let-up. Amherst suffered this phenomenon and overcame it without the need for a timeout.
“I watched the flow of the game and the problem was a little bit of timing. I didn’t feel calling a time out was going to improve the timing,” Cogan said. “I thought we’d see what happened in terms of what we talked about in practice. They did a great job. We got back in the groove.”
The third set challenge revolved mainly around Ranger Jami Turay, whose four kills and block point pulled North Ridgeville to tie the game at 9-9 before the Comets slowly pulled away for a 25-19 win and a 3-0 match.
Another bright spot in Amherst’s lineup is setter London Voss. The Comets are heavy on sophomores this season and they contributed a lot to the night’s positive outcome.
“London set last year as a freshman but she did better job this year as a sophomore. Tory Small, her timing on her blocking was excellent tonight,” said Cogan. “Sarah Farley played really well all night long. Sarah Wiegand, another sophomore, played really well all night long.”
Carl Sullenberger can be reached at email@example.com.
Carl Sullenberger | Amherst News-Times Ashley Makruski slams a kill through the defense of Rangers Samantha Horst and Katie Barno. Makruski’s 18 kills led the Comets to their 25-10, 25-10, 25-19 win over North Ridgeville on Tuesday.