Kenston has dominated the Chagrin Valley Conference landscape for the past decade.
Kenston’s volleyball team has won 11 straight Chagrin Valley Conference championships, and the Bombers are off to another good start this year.
This past week Kenston traveled to rival West Geauga and won in three games: 25-14, 25-19, 25-14.
With both teams having first-year coaches, Steve Scherlacher and his Bombers improved to 2-3 and 2-0 in the CVC, while Chris Carlo’s Wolverines bunch dropped to 1-4 and 0-2.
The Bombers cruised through the first game. It was the second game where the Wolverines showed their potential.
Kenston got off to a 7-3 lead, and it looked like West G might relinquish the match. However, the Wolverines fought back, playing their best volleyball of the match.
West G earned leads of 10-9, 12-11 and 17-16, but the Bombers turned up the heat and finished Game 2 on a 9-2 run.
“That’s something you tell the girls,” Wolverines coach Carlo said. “We have really hung in there against some of the biggest hitters in the league.”
Kenston coach Scherlacher wasn’t as happy with the middle game, but will definitely take the road conference victory.
“They played better and we didn’t play as well,” Scherlacher said. “I was pleased with games one and three. Overall, it was a pretty good day.”
In Game 3, West G got off to an early 2-0 lead — comeback was on the minds of the Wolverines — but that was the last lead they enjoyed. The Bombers answered with another 9-2 run and never trailed again.
It was another step toward the annual goal of winning the CVC for Kenston.
“We have a different group of kids competing this year,” Scherlacher said. “It will be a challenge, but we look forward to it.
“I expect us to improve a lot throughout the season. Our goals are to win the CVC and win district.”
Jen Smith, one of Kenston’s three seniors, led the team with 10 kills.
“We played better in the first and third games,” Smith said. “We lost our focus in the second game, but we’re coming together as a team.”
Smith said the team, especially the seniors, does not want the string of CVC titles to end on their watch.
“Definitely, that’s the number one goal this season,” Smith said. “We don’t want to be the team that breaks it.”
Carlo pointed to the second game to show the potential the Wolverines own.
“We’re in transition and a building stage,” Carlo said. “We’re coming along. It’s a very tough conference with a lot of tough competition. We have to execute.”
Better competition has brought out the best of the Wolverines, but they still need to work consistency, Carlo added.
“That’s been our story all season, at least up to this point,” Carlo said. “We’ve done well against the heavy hitters of the league, but we have to get rid of our mental errors.”
Senior Kayla Braun had 16 digs for the Bombers with three aces, while teammate Abby Singleton also had 16 digs. Kenston’s Michala Jepson earned nine kills; Victoria Jepson had seven.
West G freshman Sydney Palivec had 19 assists. Megan Tomsich’s serve was tough to handle by evidence of her five aces; she also had five kills.
Cassie Carlo led West G with seven digs, and Nicole Insana had four blocks and six kills.