TUPPERS PLAINS, Ohio — As it turned out, the third time wasn’t the charm.
The Eastern volleyball team faced off with Tri-Valley Conference Hocking Division leader Waterford for the third time this season on Monday in Meigs County, and just like the other two matches, the Lady Wildcats came out victorious.
In the opening game, the teams fought through six lead changes and six ties, the final of which came at 14-all. Waterford (13-1, 8-0 TVC Hocking) outscored the Lady Eagles (8-6, 6-3) by an 11-5 clip over the remainder of the game, as WHS earned the 25-19 win.
After a pair of early lead changes in Game 2, Waterford opened up its largest lead of the night of 10 points, at 19-9. Eastern battled back to within five points but ultimately fell by a 25-18 margin.
Waterford led by as many as five points in the third game, with the Lady Eagles tying the game six times before taking their first lead at 25-24. WHS regained the lead at 27-26 and never fell behind again, sealing the sweep with a 30-28 win.
“I really thought we came together as a team and clawed our way back,” said Eastern head coach Megan Cross. “I really think that they love to play Waterford, because it’s always a good game. I defiantly think it added to the momentum they got together. I’m glad that there weren’t as many errors as we could have had. I think we have some easy building blocks to work off of if we do see them again come tournament time.”
The Lady Eagle service attack was led by senior Morgain Little with nine points, including three aces. Jenna Chadwell was next with six points and two aces, followed by Mackenzie Brooks with five points and two aces. Allison Barber finished with three points in the setback, while Elayna Bissell and Morgan Baer each had two service points.
Barber led EHS at the net with six kills and one solo block. Chadwell contributed four kills and one block to the Lady Eagle cause, while Baer had two kills, one block and a team-best 21 assists. Little also finished with two kills in the setback, while Brooks had one kill and one block.
Eastern’s defense came up with 60 digs, led by Barber and Bissell with 14 apiece.
Haley Klintworth led Waterford with nine service points and three aces, followed by Hayley Duff with eight points and one ace. Jordan Taylor and Allex Teters each had seven points in the win, with two and one ace respectively. Hannah Duff posted six points and one ace for the victors, while Megan Ball had four points and one ace.
At the net, Waterford was paced by Ball with 14 kills and three blocks. Alli Kern finished with 10 kills for the guests, Denise Young added six kills and one block, while Morgan Lang chipped in with four kills. Taylor had one kill and a team-best 14 assists, Teters contributed one kill and one block, while Klintworth marked a team-best seven digs.
Waterford also defeated Eastern as part of the Athens Invitational on Aug. 26 and in a league match in Washington County on Aug. 31.
After a trip to Federal Hocking on Tuesday, the Lady Eagles will return home on Thursday to host Southern.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.