The Cougars volleyball program is one of those. And one of those hurdles was toppled Tuesday when Spanish Springs upset Reno for the first time in school history.
The 26-24, 25-22, 20-25, 25-18 victory leaves Spanish Springs (17-5, 5-1) all alone atop the High Desert League standings.
“I’m really happy. We could’ve folded up the tent there after losing Game 3,” Spanish Springs coach Frank Sandomenico said. “We know Reno is a great team. They have not lost a High Desert match in the four years I’ve been here. They are well coached and tough to beat. This is a good win for us.”
Spanish Springs grabbed the momentum early in Game 1. Reno led 5-4 in the initial game, but Spanish Springs scored the next three points and did not trail again. The first game was still relatively tight when Reno got a kill to pull within two, 13-11. The SSHS spikers reeled off the next five points to forge ahead 18-11.
Spanish Springs continued to build on its lead, twice going up by seven, 21-14 and 23-16. However, Reno was not about to roll over and die. The visiting Huskies put together a 7-1 spurt that knotted the contest at 24-24.
That’s as good as it got for the guests. The Cougars got a kill from sophomore middle blocker Gabby Szachara and Reno was called for hitting the net to end the first game.
Game 2 was similar early. Reno grabbed a quick 4-3 edge only to see Spanish Springs score three straight for a 6-4 lead.
The two teams traded mini runs to a 14-12 SSHS advantage. But Reno put together its best outburst of the match from there. The Huskies outscored Spanish Springs 8-1 and took a 19-15 lead.
Reno still led 21-18, but then it collapsed. Spanish Springs proceeded to outscore the Huskies 7-1 the rest of the way in Game 2 to snare a two-games-to-none lead in the match.
The Huskies got it going in Game 3 and stayed in contention. Reno found itself facing a 5-4 deficit but scored six straight points to capture a 10-5 lead. The Huskies did not relinquish that lead in the third game.
Reno took a 16-9 lead at one point. The seven-point gap was the widest of the game. Spanish Springs did fight back to get as close as two, 22-20, after a pair of Rachel Loadholt aces. Reno scored the next three points to take Game 3 and trim the SSHS lead to two games to one.
Spanish Springs responded in a big way. Down 6-4 in Game 4, the hosts scored the next five points, a run capped by a Brandi Brucato ace and Lyndsey Anderson kill.
The Cougars did not trail again. Reno was down three, 11-8, but Spanish Springs outscored its foe 9-3 and upped its lead to 20-11.
The Huskies tried to hang around. They got as close as four, 21-17, but the Cougs sealed the match with a 4-1 run.
Spanish Springs junior Lyndsey Anderson was the star of the show Tuesday. She pounded a match-high 16 kills and gave away 25 assists. Hannah Meadows chipped in 15 assists for the Cougars.
“Lyndsey is totally the focus of our team, but to have a second setter as good as Hannah, that allows us to do what we do and use Lyndsey in a lot of different ways,” Sandomenico said.
SSHS liberos Kylie Baer and Brucato got up 12 and 10 digs. Loadholt and Melly Munley contributed 13 and 11 kills to the winning cause.
Spanish Springs is in action again Thursday at Damonte Ranch for a 6 p.m. Northern 4A crossover league match.