VOLLEYBALL: Riders fall to Elida in close 5th game

ST. MARYS —  Elida escaped from a three point deficit at match point in a deciding fifth game and rallied to beat St. Marys 25-15, 23-25, 25-20, 16-25, 18-16, on Thursday night at Memorial High School’s Murotech Court.

A young St. Marys volleyball team still lacks experience closing out a match, head coach Tricia Rosenbeck said after the loss. St. Marys had a pair of attacking errors that helped Elida rally.

“We just didn’t finish when we needed to finish,” Rosenbeck said. “We played scared when we were up and we should have been the team that was not playing scared. That has a lot to do with our inexperience.”

St. Marys’ Regan Aller had 10 kills and five blocks to lead the Roughriders. Carolina Castillo had seven kills. Lee Ann Bertke added six kills and Lexi Roop had five kills for the Riders, who fell to 3-7 and 1-1 in the Western Buckeye League.

Elida found itself on the brink of a loss at 14-11 when it scored four straight points to take a 15-14 lead on an Aubrey Williams block.

St. Marys knotted things up 15-15 before Elida sealed things with a Kali Cahill kill on its third match-point attempt in the fifth game for the 18-16 fifth-game win.

Elida head coach Kevin King said his young team took a big step forward by going on the road and rallying past the Roughriders.

“This was a big confidence booster, to come into St. Marys and sticking to it,” King said. “We had a little leadership come through. We had a couple of girls that said we weren’t going to give up.”

Torie McAdams led Elida with 12 kills. Kali Cahill had 10 kills, including the match clincher.

The Roughriders host Minster next Tuesday night at 6 p.m.