Lady Elkers overwhelm Sheffield, remain undefeated at 8-0

Using timely passing and 29 kills out of 39 attempts, Ridgway improved to 8-0 Tuesday night with a 3-0 (25-12, 25-10, 25-11) victory over Sheffield.The Lady Elkers overwhelmed the opposition Tuesday night as they only faced three deficits in the three-set victory; Along with 16 aces on the night, the home team made only four errors as Sheffield averaged just 11 points per set."Sheffield has some pretty good hitters but we were just able to capitalize because our passing was better," said Ridgway head girls varsity volleyball coach Janet Redmond. "Once Sheffield got a pass off, they were able to execute some good kills and it was nice to see that."The Lady Wolverines threatened early in the first set at 5-3 before a Nicole Breier kill got things rolling for Ridgway. The home team's first ace of the night came from Maria Buhler to take the early 7-3 advantage.Ridgway then built an insurmountable lead behind 11 service points from Erica Thorwart, including three aces, and kills from Breier and Jenna Hoffman.An errant serve stopped the rally at 20-8 but consecutive Breier aces righted the ship before the Lady Elkers took the first game, 25-12.Sheffield never had a lead in the second game as Ridgway took a quick 12-2 lead behind two kills from Breier, two kills from Katie Oknefski, and an ace from Hoffman.The lead reached double digits when a Breier tip gave Ridgway a 15-5 lead. The senior would later tally another ace for a 17-6 lead as Ridgway took the second set, 25-10.Redmond cycled in some underclassmen in the third set but the home team continued to press against Sheffield, building an early 9-3 advantage after a Buhler ace. Consecutive blocks by Breier moved the scored to 11-7 and after following with a tip to go to 12-7, an Oknefski kill and Breier ace gave Ridgway a 14-7 lead.The teams traded errors to 19-10 and Breier followed up with another kill to take a 21-10 lead. An errant Sheffield serve gave Ridgway the 22-11 lead and three service points from Emily Ames, including an ace to take a 23-11 advantage, sealed the match."I was really pleased with Emily Ames because we've worked on her serve since she was in ninth grade and she never could overhand serve, and this was her first [Tuesday] night," Redmond said. "It was good to have Mandie Leithner come in and have the winning kill in the third set. It was good to bring the underclassmen up and give them some experience for the next few years. "I want them to be comfortable playing with the varsity team."Breier recorded 16 kills while Oknefski tallied seven."I didn't think we'd be 8-0 at this point but since these girls have been with me for three or four years, I was sure we'd be competitive," Redmond said, "But to be 8-0, that's totally awesome and our players deserve everything that they're getting, and I'm very proud of them."Ridgway is scheduled to host Curwensville with junior varsity action to start at 6 p.m. Thursday.