CASS CITY — All of a sudden, things just got a whole lot closer in the race for the Greater Thumb West volleyball championship.
Thanks to Bad Axe.
The Hatchets, who have struggled with their game in recent weeks, turned it around at the right time here Tuesday night against league-leading Cass City. A couple of changes on the offensive and defensive ends helped the Hatchets capture a hard-fought 25-14, 25-19, 24-26, 25-15 decision over the Red Hawks.
“This was a huge win for us,” said Bad Axe coach Mindy Breault. “We haven't been playing well lately and have been in a little bit of a slump... In the past couple of days I made some changes in both the offense and the defense. The girls were really accepting of all the changes because they wanted to win and tonight everything just clicked. I'm really proud of them.”
With the victory, the Hatchets pull to within one game of the Red Hawks in the GTW standings. Cass City and Reese are tied at the top at 5-1, with the Hatchets and Unionville-Sebewaing Area at 4-2.
“(We) failed to show up and play serious ball,” said Cass City coach Brenda Sherman. “We just couldn't find our game tonight. Everyone was on their heels and we weren't anticipating the ball. Our coverage was in slow motion. Bad Axe played a solid game and we let them walk away with a win. We just made too many errors.”
Bad Axe cruised early on, breaking out to big leads in Games 1 and 2. The Red Hawks came back in Game 3 to pull closer, but the Hatchets responded with an excellent effort in the deciding Game 4.
“Cass City is a good team and we knew we couldn't let up at anytime,” Breault said.
For the Hatchets, who are now 15-9-5 overall, Taylor Breault led the way with 10 kills and three aces while Rachel Breault added nine kills and three blocks, Emily Sisco seven kills and five blocks, Ellen MacAlpine 14 assists and 17 digs, Alyssa Kociba 13 assists, and Taylor Braun 26 digs.
“We needed this win — both for our confidence and to stay in the league race,” Breault said.
For the Red Hawks, who are now 18-5-3 overall, Stephanie Leeson had six kills and 17 assists while Logan Rowell chipped in six kills and three aces, Megan Parrish nine assists, and McKensie Parrish 15 digs and three aces.
The Red Hawks have a huge match at home Thursday night against fellow league-leader Reese. Bad Axe, meanwhile, is idle. The Hatchets resume play next Tuesday at home against Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port.
Ubly tops Sandusky
SANDUSKY — Ubly dropped the first game to Sandusky (19-25), but recovered to win the next three (25-21, 25-17, 25-21) here Tuesday night.
Brittany Forman was 11-of-11 serving with seven kills and four blocks to led the Bearcats while Alyssa Briolat was 16-of-16 serving with 25 digs and four aces.
Ashley Kubacki added 26 assists and 12 digs, Nicole Kubacki had 21 digs, five kills and four blocks, Connie Heleski 13 digs, Taylor Pionk seven kills, Jessica Gracey 15 kills and four blocks and Briana Lemke 8-of-8 serving.
North Huron sweeps Port Hope
PORT HOPE — North Huron swept Port Hope (25-23, 25-12, 25-13) to win this North Central Thumb League match here Tuesday night.
Sara Clancy had 17 kills, four digs, two blocks and two assists to lead the Warriors. Amanda Navock added 15 assists, four kills and four digs, Hanna Selaty had nine kills, eight digs and four aces, Clara Yaroch nine assists, seven aces and six digs, Ashley Case 11 digs, three aces and two kills and Karlie Goretski eight digs and three kills.
EPBP falls to BCAS
BAY CITY — Bay City All Saints needed four games to get by Elkton-Pigeon-Bay Port (25-23, 26-24, 16-25, 23-25) here Tuesday night.
Ashlyn Albrecht had 14 kills, six digs and three blocks to pace the Lakers, Erin Albrecht added 15 digs and nine kills, Rebecca Schember had nine kills and seven digs, Kayla Deering six kills and five blocks, Krissia Krohn 10 digs and seven kills and Brooklyn Foy 33 assists.
Reese sweeps USA
REESE — Reese pulled into a tie for the top spot in the GTW with a 25-16, 25-19, 25-20 sweep over Unionville-Sebewaing Area.
Marlette downs Brown City in GTE battle
BROWN CITY — Marlette and Brown City are now tied atop the GTE standings after the Raiders earned a 22-25, 25-19, 25-21, 23-25, 15-9 victory over the Green Devils.
Both teams are 6-1 in league play.
“It wasn't pretty, but the girls played hard and it is a ‘W,’” said Marlette coach Fred McDowell.