WOLFHURST - Whenever Bridgeport seemed to make a surge Wednesday night, St. Clairsville had an answer.
And that penchant to solve the Bulldogs proved to be the difference in the Red Devils' 25-17, 25-19, 25-17 triumph in a season-opening prep volleyball match for both squads inside Bridgeport High School's John Havlicek Gymnasium.
''I'm happy with how we've come together,'' St. Clairsville coach Christa Truchan said. ''We've been battling injuries. So, we've been playing some people in different positions.
No. 10 Emily Smith of St. Clairsville prepars to serve Wednesday against Bridgeport.
''Bridgeport came out strong and definitely challenged us in areas that we need to improve on.''
The Red Devils went virtually unchallenged during the first two games, but the Bulldogs started strong in the third.
Bridgeport jumped ahead 2-0 and then 4-3. Eventually, though, St. Clairsville went ahead 6-5 and never trailed again.
The Red Devils strung together three straight points to take a 12-7 lead. Later, St. C. ran off six consecutive to increase the advantage to 21-12.
After playing a scrimmage Tuesday night, Truchan, in her third season guiding the Red Devils, was concerned what kind of shape her team would be in for the road test. Her worries were soon put to rest.
''This team works well together and that's a credit to their offseason and the things we've done in the summer and different things,'' she said. ''We only lost three players, so we have a strong nucleus back.
''We've talked about playing together and not losing the momentum when we have it. The girls were able to do that most of the time. We're looking to continue to do that and finishing games.''
While St. Clairsville looked solid, the Bulldogs looked a bit rough around the edges. However, it didn't take first-year coach Ron Kelly long to pinpoint a few areas that need work.
''Communication,'' said Kelly, the veteran coach who has 316 victories in 31 years as a prep mentor. ''Talking to each other seemed to be a problem along with hitting the ball.
''Once we start doing that we'll be OK.
''I'm pleased with the progress that's been made. We're in somewhat of a rebuilding process and, as the season goes along, we should see improvement.''
Brigee Mick had 14 points and 12 kills for the Red Devils. Rebekah Sadlowski added eight points, three kills and two aces, Gabbie Espen collected nine points and 25 assists, Summer Gallentine had nine digs, Megan Teater recorded six points and four kills, Emily Smith had four kills, and Alexis St. Clair tallied five points and six kills.
''Our key players got us the momentum and everyone else was able to rally around that,'' Truchan said. ''It was a total team effort.''
Alysa Crook had six points and 12 assists for the Bulldogs. Hannah Lewis added nine digs, while Cheyenne Flowers had six digs, four kills and two blocks, Shannon Frey had a dig and a block, Mikaya Green collected four digs, Amber Millard had nine digs and four kills, Briana Massey had two blocks, Maclaine Murad had three points, two aces, five digs, four kills and two blocks, and Ali Baker had five points, two digs and a kill.
Golfers Edge Toronto
TORONTO - Austin Merenoff took home medalist honors with a 1-over 36 and was closely followed by teammate Mike Manfresca with a 37, as Steubenville Catholic (154) knocked off Toronto (209) at Dyer Country Club.
Nick Ivkovich (39) and Jason Bensur (42) also scored well for the Crusaders.
Ben Hlivko's 47 paced the Red Knights. Ron Newbold carded a 50.
Buckeye Local 207, Weir 22
RAYLAND - Eric Williams' 43 was the low round from the day though he was chased closely by Brenna Czuchran (45) as Buckeye Local got past Weir at Bec-Wood Hills Golf Course.
Jake Savage and Dan Duill completed the scoring for the Panthers with scores of 58 and 61, respectively.
Joe Patterson (50) and Paul Orecchio (51) paced the Red Riders.
Steubenville Catholic 1
River View 1
STEUBENVILLE - Moriah Vosteen made eight saves and Ana McNamara scored the lone goal early in the second half as Steubenville Catholic (0-0-1) and River View (0-1-1) ended their match in a tie.
The Black Bears had nine shots to six, for the Crusaders.
Steubenville Catholic, which played without the injured Maria Boston, who was the team's leading scorer the last two season, also received an assist from Molly Marrow.
Dover 160, Meadowbrook 170, West Holmes 180
MILLERSBURG, Ohio - Cogan Wagner's 2-over 38 was good enough for medalist honors as he led Dover (59-11 overall, 5-0 duals) to a tri-match victory at Fire Ridge Golf Course.
Meadowbrook (40-16, 8-1) finished second, 10 shots back, and was led by Ian West with a 41. Nate Frencik (43), Damon Moore (43) and Zach Clari (43) also contributed for the Colts.
West Holmes came in third with a 180 score.