Wheeling Central Spikes Shadyside in a Classic

Third set witnessed teams tied 16 times

Photo by Kyle Lutz Wheeling Central’s Madison Wiedebusch sets the ball during a match against Shadyside on Wednesday night at Wheeling Central High School.

WHEELING — During a volleyball match, one set can give all the momentum to a team. In the third set of the Wheeling Central and Shadyside match, that was the case.

After seeing the Tigers take the first set, the Maroon Knights bounced back and took the second to even the score. The third set was the most competitive as the crowd saw 16 ties.

Wheeling Central, with some momentum already on its side following the win in the previous set, took the third and held off a vicious Shadyside comeback to secure the match, 20-25, 25-15, 28-26, 25-22 on Wednesday night.

“First set, not very good,” Wheeling Central coach Michelle Runkle said. “Second set, woke up a little bit. Third set, they set the tone and fourth set, we had a little better lead than what I would have liked to given up, but things happen. We’re still building .”

During the third set, the point margin never went above five. Central led the entire set before Shadyside tied it for the 10th time at 15-15. The Tigers eventually took their first lead of the match scoring the next point. However, the Maroon Knights bounced back and scored seven of the next eight points to hold a comfortable 22-17 lead.

Shadyside then went on a run of its own and took six of the next seven points to tie the game at 23-23. Both teams traded points until the score read 26-26. The Maroon Knights buckled down and secured the final two to give them a 2-1 set lead.

“Shadyside is not going to give you very much. They’re going to dig and they’re going to get everything,” Runkle said. ”They’re well coached and have good placement. We had to always play catch up because they found our weaknesses and we had to adjust and that was a big thing.

”The girls really listened, paid attention on the side and had an adjustment for them and they did it. I would say that’s the biggest thing.”

Wheeling Central kept things going and took a commanding 9-2 lead in the fourth set. However, Shadyside remained calm and slowly climbed back into the game. The Tigers eventually tied it at 20-20 and took the lead scoring the next point. The Maroon Knights didn’t break and scored five of the final six points to put an end to any comeback.

“The most important set is the second set,” Shadyside coach Don Chamberlain said. “So many times in high school and college a team will win the first set and then lose the next three. We didn’t play really well, but I don’t want to make excuses. We just didn’t play well.

”Frankly, they dug up everything that we put down. We didn’t serve well, that did make a difference. I’m very proud of Central’s team as well as my team. My team didn’t give up. They could have given up a couple of times and they came back.”

Nikki Nolte tallied three aces, five digs and 13 kills for the Maroon Knights while Madison Wiedebusch had four digs and eight kills. Julie Padden had 26 assists and Kaitlyn Ferns compiled 10 kills and four blocks.

For the Tigers, Macy Coffland secured seven kills, Jess Cicogna had 17 assists and Riley Brown had six kills, four blocks and three aces.