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Monroe holds off Tommies
MARYSVILLE In an uncommon match-up so late in the season, the undefeated Marysville and Monroe volleyball teams finally met in the Tomahawks gym Oct. 11.
M-P took the first set, 25-23, but Monroe found its rhythm and won the next three sets 25-16, 25-20, 25-20 to claim the match and continue its winning streak. Capable of putting together long scoring streaks, the highly touted Bearcats allowed M-P little room for error.
The Bearcats put on a show of their offensive strength in their game two victory, scoring nine consecutive points to win the set.
Knowing Monroes strength, M-P coach Shelly Johnson said it was her teams strategy to stay on offense as long as possible and take advantage of her Tomahawks capable serving.
Our plan was to be tough on offense and take them out of the match, she said after the loss. Monroe is a really good team. Youre not going to stop them when theyre on.
Still, M-P bounced back from the game two loss, staying within striking distance of the conference rivals. In game three, with emotional play by the girls particularly middle blocker Jessica Masters the Tomahawks persisted despite an eight-point deficit to close within two points of Monroe, leaving the games outcome in doubt until the Bearcats 25th point.
Game four was closer, but it was also a demonstration of Monroes dominance. The games first nine points were decided by the Bearcats, with M-Ps two points coming from Monroe errors. But kills by Masters and outside hitter Kristeen Juarez brought the home team back into the match, and the Tomahawks rallied to a 14-14 tie.
It was as close as theyd get to pulling off the win.
In the first game, we were serving hard, Johnson said. I think my girls were playing great defense, considering the balls that (Monroe) was hitting at them.
We let them get ahead, she added. They were ahead 6-1, and its hard to come back from that.
Johnson credited Masters competitiveness with keeping the team fired up, even when they were trailing. Calling it her best game of the year, Johnson added that senior Anna West stepped up to the challenge with 22 attacks, seven kills and no errors. Junior Emily Boerger had 10 kills and four stuffed blocks.