The Washington Lady Blue Lion varsity volleyball team hosted the squad from Logan Elm High School on the opening night of the Division II Sectional in the Southeast District Wednesday.
Washington was the No. 4 seed taking on the No. 5 seeded Braves.
Logan Elm won the match, three sets to one.
Scores of the sets were: 25-22, 15-25, 25-23 and 25-20.
“It was a battle the whole night,” Logan Elm head coach Aaron Ridenour said. “We started off really strong. We had probably a 10 point lead at one point. But Court House battled back and made that a three point game. We had to work hard to finish that one.
“In the second game, they pretty much dominated us,” Ridenour said. “In the third, we got off to a good start and we hung in there. It was close from there to the finish.”
“We started off relaxed,” Washington head coach Ashley DeAtley said. “We were a little too relaxed. I think our nerves played a part. We’d seen Logan Elm. They beat us earlier this season at the Zane Trace Invitational.
“We knew kind of how they played,” DeAtley said. “We had been preparing for them all week.
“We were down quite a bit but our girls got into a groove and began to fight back,” DeAtley said. “In the second game, there was a fire lit underneath our girls. They really started to hammer down. The girls figured out that we really had to attack them in order to make them move and make some errors.
“We did a good job attacking them in the second game,” DeAtley said. “In the third game, (Logan Elm) did a good job of serving and it seemed to get in our head. We couldn’t keep the passes off the net well enough.
“The girls never gave up,” DeAtley said. “We never stopped attacking, being aggressive with the ball. I am proud of the girls for that.”
Logan Elm came in with a record under .500 (8-14), but that was deceptive because of the league in which the Braves play (the Mid-State League) and their overall schedule.
“Our schedule was really strong this year,” Ridenour said. “We were in transition, graduating a bunch of kids last year (off a team that won a District championship in 2017). Our conference was really strong. So, our record wasn’t super-good, but we have some good players and they stepped up and played well today.”
Logan Elm will play Saturday at 4 p.m. at the winner of Wednesday’s Hillsboro at Sheridan match for a Sectional championship and a spot in the District tournament to be held at Southeastern High School near Chillicothe.
The Lady Lions end the 2018 season with a record of 14-9. Washington placed second in the Frontier Athletic Conference behind Chillicothe at 8-2.
“No. 14 for us, Maria (Boldoser), is a State high jump qualifier for three years,” Ridenour said. “She can really jump. She had 20 kills tonight. When she’s on her game, we’re pretty good.”
Also for Logan Elm, Megan Diehl had 11 kills.
“Our third and fourth hitters picked up their games and gave us six and five kills,” Ridenour said. “Which is a couple higher (than average) for them, so that helped us out, too.”
Hannah Haithcock led Washington with a game-high 20 kills.
Rayana Burns had 16 kills for the Lady Lions; Maddy Jenkins had seven kills.
In setting, Halli Wall had 32 assists.
In serving, Jenkins had five aces, Haithcock had four and Tabby Woods had three.
Haithcock also led the Blue Lions in digs with 17 and Woods added nine.
At the net, Haithcock had two solo blocks and Burns had one.
“I want to thank our three seniors,” DeAtley said, referring to Hannah Haithcock, Tabby Woods and Maddy Jenkins. “They did a wonderful job this season of being leaders.
“Hannah was co-player of the year,” DeAtley said. “She’s had four strong years. She has done a phenomenal job these four years.
“Tabby Woods played on varsity for two years and dressed with us as a sophomore,” DeAtley said. “Tabby stepped up tonight and played on the front row, which is not something we usually have her do. She did a nice job of stepping into a position that she wasn’t necessarily comfortable with. But, we were able to use her abilities to set from the right side.
“And Maddy Jenkins was back there serving tough and keeping us in the game,” DeAtley said. “She brought some heat this year and did some real smart things tonight on the outside.
“I couldn’t ask more of those three girls who went out swinging tonight,” DeAtley said. “They represented themselves well. For it being their last game, they did an excellent job of making sure people are going to remember them. I know they made a big impression on the rest of the girls, too.
“Our younger girls have a lot of work to do to fill those three spots next season,” DeAtley said. “We will look to people like Rayana Burns and Brittney Wilson to hopefully be leaders for us next season. I’m looking forward to next season already.”
Rayana Burns and Halli Wall were also named First Team, All-FAC for 2018. They will be honored at the FAC’s fall sports banquet on Nov. 15.
In other Division II volleyball Sectional tournament play in the Southeast District Wednesday, Fairfield Union defeated Miami Trace, 25-13, 25-11, 25-15; Circleville beat McClain, 25-14, 25-20, 25-13; Gallia Academy beat Jackson, 25-9, 25-13, 25-16; Unioto trounced River Valley, 25-9, 25-4, 25-5 and Waverly beat Athens, 25-22, 25-20, 25-20.