Riders' Season Ends In Bluffton

St. Marys' Madi Howell and Makenna Mele attempt to block Shawnee's Norah Painter's kill at the net in Tuesday's Division II district semifinal in Bluffton.
By: 
JAKE DOWLING
Sports Editor

Despite a first-set victory for the St. Marys Roughriders, the Shawnee Indians had the momentum in the entire match.

With solid play at the net and aggressive serving, the Indians punched out the Roughriders in four sets, 25-20, 23-25, 22-25, 21-25, and punched a spot in a Division II district final on Thursday against Celina on Thursday.

The Roughriders snapped a four-game win streak at the district level and will not head back to a Division II regional appearance after making it there the last two seasons after falling to Shawnee in a district semifinal at Sommer Center at Bluffton University.

St. Marys rolled to open the first set, scoring 12 of the first 13 points for a 12-1 lead, but just like in their Sept. 8 meeting, the Indians made each set difficult for the Riders.

Shawnee began to chip away at St. Marys’ large lead with three straight points and an 8-3 run overall to pull within six, 15-9.

After a St. Marys’ timeout, the Indians’ run continued as they pulled within four points, 16-12 to end an 11-4 run on serves by Norah Painter and Amanda Medsker.

From there, the Roughriders survived with Quincy Rable serving two points to push the lead to six, 20-14, but Makayla Donley served the Indians back with three points to pull within two, 21-19.

An exchange of points and an ace by Ally Angstmann gave the Roughriders a 1-0 set lead. Coming into Tuesday, when the Roughriders won the first set in a match, they had a record of 35-1, dating back to 2014.

On Tuesday, that first-set victory was the last one of the 2016 season as the Indians took that 11-4 run at one point in the first set and 19-13 run to end that first set to catapult them the rest of the way.

For a full story, read Wednesday's print edition of The Evening Leader.