Lady Tigers fall to Miami East in tournament action

FAIRBORN – The Miami East Vikings representing the Cross County Conference (CCC) was undeterred trailing 9-1 to the Versailles Lady Tigers in the first set of the Ohio High School Athletic Association (OHSAA) regional semifinal volleyball match at Fairmont’s Trent Arena defeating Versailles 3-1 Thursday night.

“I just think we broke down mentally,” said Versailles Coach Kenzie Bruggeman. “I think that’s all it was.  We just weren’t able to step out and accept the challenge   we knew that is was going to be a challenge but we really weren’t able to engage ourselves in the game and just go out and take it   we could have we could have taken it but

The Lady Vikings battled back to tie the set at 18-18, 19-19, 20-20 and 21-21 before Versailles would close out set one on a 4-1 run to take a 1-0 match lead with a 25-22 win.

Game two saw six ties with the last coming at 16-16 as Miami East took advantage of a 9-2 run to close out the second set and even the match at 1-1 with a 25-18 win.

“They started to run a quicker middle and we were releasing out to their outsides every time,” Bruggeman said. “Just a lot of discipline things and that led to us not talking, not working as one. That was very evident on the court.”

Versailles opened set three with a 3-0 score only to have the Lady Vikings even the set at 3-3 for the first of 19 ties, including the final 26-26 deadlock before Miami East would take game three by a 28-26 score.

The set’s largest lead; 3-0 belonged to the Lady Tigers coming in the opening seconds with the balance of the game showing Versailles with one 2-point advantage and the Lady Vikings holding five 2-point leads including the 28-26 set three margin of victory putting Miami East up 2-games-to-1.

Miami East took a 3-0 lead to open the fourth set only to have the Lady Tigers even the score at 3-3 and 4-4 while taking their lone lead of the set at 5-4 before the Lady Vikings would begin to pull away doubling the score at 10-5 and 12-6.

Versailles would battle back to make it a two point game trailing 21-19 only to have the Lady Vikings closing out the match on a 4-0 run to win 25-19 and move on in tournament play.

“We knew that is was going to be a challenge,” Bruggeman stated, “but we really weren’t able to engage ourselves in the game and just go out and take it. “We could have…we could have taken it.”

“I like it but not where we ended,” Bruggeman said of the 2016 season. “I think we could have went a lot farther…but lesson learned.

“Great group,” said Bruggeman of her seniors. “Lot of leadership especially in the off season. They had a drive and a purpose. We just fell short.”

PHOTO CAPTION: Kami Ording goes for a Lady Tigers dig in tournament play against Miami East (Gaylen Blosser photo)

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