Golden Bears spike Beavers

Oak Glen’s Hanna Tice tries to hit the ball past Beaver Local’s Madison Smith (24) and Heavyn Wolski (25) during Tuesday’s OVAC 4A semifinal at Potter Fieldhouse. (Photo by Chris Rambo)

EAST LIVERPOOL–The Oak Glen volleyball team has mowed through most of the teams on its schedule this season.

Saturday, the Golden Bears will get a second chance at one of the only squads to slow them down.

Powered by 13 kills from Hannah Rogers, second-seeded Oak Glen dispatched third-seeded Beaver Local 25-17, 25-14, 18-25, 25-21 in an OVAC 4A semifinal Tuesday at Potter Fieldhouse.

The Golden Bears move to 23-2-1 overall and earn a rematch with top-seeded East Liverpool in the 4A title match at 11:30 a.m. Saturday at Union Local High School.

East Liverpool swept Oak Glen in their regular season match on October 2 and also swept the Golden Bears in last season’s 4A title match.

“We definitely wanted to play them again,” Rogers said. “They are the toughest team by far that we played this year. I think we’ll be ready to go.”

In addition to Rogers, the Golden Bears got a balanced effort across the board, with Jadyn Smith totaling 13 points and two aces, Jaedyn Hissam chipping in 12 points, Alayna Kranis totaling 10 kills and McKayla Goodlin finishing with 13 digs.

“I know we all wanted another chance to play East Liverpool,” Oak Glen coach Elissa Greathouse said. “They are the hardest team we play all season and its good practice for us to see them as much as we can.”

Greathouse was serving as the acting coach Tuesday while head coach Ethel Riser was away from the team for an unspecified reason.

“She’ll probably be back before the end of the season, she just couldn’t be with us tonight,” Greathouse said. “I don’t want to comment any more on it.”

After the Golden Bears breezed through the first two games without much of a problem, the Beavers rose up and made things interesting with a 25-18 win in the third set.

“I just think we lost our energy a little bit,” Greathouse said. “But the girls didn’t give up and stayed very supportive of each other. I think that made the difference.”

The Beavers (15-6) were led by Madison Smith with 19 kills, four aces and three blocks, while Hannah Call had 27 digs, Madison Kendall had 21 assists, Corin Turkovich had three aces and three digs and Abby Jackson had five kills.

“We’re having trouble at this point in the season finding our consistency, but we made a couple of lineup changes and that seemed to get us going,” Beaver Local coach Sarah Lowe said. “We have a lot of very talented players, our goal right now is just to get them to execute a little better together. We’re going to keep trying some different things until we figure out what’s going to work best.”

The Beavers got out to an 11-7 lead in the fourth game before the Golden Bears gradually moved in front.

Hanna Tice made a valuable contribution with five blocks, while Brittany Giorgini had seven digs Graci Tice had three kills and Rileigh Hooker had two kills.

“Our communication was a big reason we were able to come out with the win,” Rogers said. “We’ve been working on that a lot and it’s gotten a lot better. We kept being positive and picking each other up tonight.”