But that doesn’t mean coach Kristen Flagtvedt was happy with the effort after the 25-18, 25-11, 25-23 victory.
The Raiders had a clear advantage at the net, and they took advantage of it in Game 1 when Kendra Davis hammered down the bulk of her team-high eight kills.
That was the problem for Flagtvedt though. No one maintained the consistency across all three games.
“I just didn’t think we were consistent,” Flagtvedt said. “We would have a good pass, but then the set wasn’t consistent or the hitter wasn’t consistent putting it away. I didn’t think we had a person who really wanted to put the ball away consistently tonight. We still missed quite a few serves as well.”
Reed actually had to battle back from an early 7-4 deficit in the first game but never trailed again after taking an 8-7 lead. In fact, the Raiders (11-11, 4-1 HDL) never trailed again the rest of the night.
Game 2 was a blowout from the get go after the Blue and Gold rallied out to a 5-0 advantage. Reed pushed the gap to double digits for the first time, 14-4.
The Panthers answered with three straight points, but never got closer than 14-7.
The Raiders got the lead back up to 10 by doubling up on North Valleys, 20-10. The visitors didn’t have much fight left in the second game.
Reed scored the final five points of the game on the strength of three of Alicia Lee’s five aces in the match.
However, even after romping in Game 2 by 14 points, the RHS spikers could not put the Panthers away until the very end.
Reed grabbed a 14-8 edge after a Lee ace, but North Valleys battled back with four unanswered points, making it 14-12.
That started a streak of 12 straight sideouts that made it either a two- or three-point lead for Reed. The Raiders finally broke the pattern to pad their cushion to four points, 21-17.
The hosts still could not pull away. North Valleys made it a 21-19, 22-20 and 24-22 game before a bad set by Reed pushed the game to the brink, 24-23.
That’s when a tip by Katrina Spencer ended the match in three games.
“I had a few players in there that don’t see as much playing time, but I still thought we should have come out stronger. I thought we kind of went through the motions,” Flagtvedt said of the third game.
Spencer also led Reed with eight kills, while Rachel LeSage contributed 15 assists, 10 digs and five aces. No other Raider had more than three kills.
Reed has a non-league match at Wooster today scheduled for 6 p.m.