Braves dominate Cougars in first-ever matchup


Brownstown Central used aggressive serving and a strong attacking game to defeat Trinity Lutheran 25-17, 25-14, 25-9 in varsity volleyball action Tuesday night in the Bollinger Athletic Complex.

Braves coach Jennifer Shade said she liked the way her team took control of the match from the start.

“It’s always fun when you play a Jackson County rival,’ she said. “The girls all know each-other. They play in the off-season, so it’s fun when they can get on the court together.

“I wanted to make sure we kept our focus. We started out strong and stayed on top of them, and stayed focused for three sets.”

After the Cougars scored the first point of the night, Brooklyn Snodgrass served the Braves into an 8-1 lead. Trinity trailed 21-15 when Claire Pace scored a point on an attack that sparked the Braves to a strong finish.

In the second set, the Braves built leads of 10-4 and 19-10 before kills by Sydney Stahl and Sydney Jaynes closed the gap to 19-12.

The Braves finished the set strong with a 4-0 run with Heidi Booher serving an ace for match point.

Snodgrass’ second ace of the third set gave the Braves a 5-0 lead, another ace by Riley Nuss put the Braves on top 11-2, and a kill by Addie Wilkerson set the score 16-5.

Snodgrass served five straight points to increase BC’s lead to 23-7.

After an attack by Hannah Sabotin left the Cougars trailing 23-9, Keeli Darlage had a kill for the Braves to finish the match.

Pace led the Braves at the net with 23 for 24 with 13 kills, Darlage had nine kills and Wilkerson finished with six kills.

“We were probably a little more aggressive, a little bit quicker,” Shade said of the Braves’ attacking. “I think that’s good for Trinity to face what we showed them. That will only make them better.”

Snodgrass was 23 of 24 with six aces in serving, and Booher served four aces. Snodgrass had 17 digs.

“They were very aggressive servers and their defense was very scrappy,” Trinity coach Chelsea Stroub said. “They serve-received very well, and our serving was not aggressive tonight.”

The Cougars were 38-for-42 in serving and did not have an ace.

Shade said she expected her team to serve aggressive.

“We felt like if we could keep them out of their offense and keep their big hitters from getting the ball that it would make it a lot easier on us, and I think we did a good job of serving aggressive and keeping their offense from being aggressive,” she said.

“Brownstown had a lot of strong hitters, but we just couldn’t get all of our things together tonight,” Stroub said.

Sabotin led the Cougars at the net with with 23 hits and nine kills, and Jaynes had four kills.

Chloe Criswsell and Sabotin each had three blocks.

Both teams will be on the road Thursday with the Braves (10-7) going to Silver Creek for a Mid-Southern Conference match and the Cougars (7-8) traveling to Bedford North Lawrence.

“We’re going to work on cutting down on our errors and our serve-receive and play together as a team,” Stroub said.

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