The Cougars took a 25-16, 25-16, 25-10 victory over the visiting Panthers to improve to 6-5 on the season in conference clashes and keep their playoff hopes alive.
“It was low energy, and we knew that was going to be kind of a trap for us because energy was so high against Reed,” Spanish Springs coach Frank Sandomenico said. “We are looking forward to (Tuesday’s) McQueen game and we knew it would be a tough night energy wise. We battled through it and got the job done.”
The Cougars came back from being down two games to none against Reed two days earlier.
“Sandwiched between Reed and McQueen we knew it was going to be tough,” Sandomenico said, alluding to the North Valleys match. “The girls are young and that’s what happens.”
Trailing 7-4 in Game, the Cougars went on a 6-0 spree for the go-ahead points that they never gave up. Melly Munley served up back-to-back aces to put the Cougars ahead 16-10. Spanish Springs pulled ahead 22-13 but the Panthers scored three in a row, trying to make a comeback. Still, the Cougars’ lead was too much, and the hosts took the nine-point triumph in the opener.
Game 2 had a similar result. Trailing 5-2, the Panthers scored four straight to take a 6-5 lead over the Cougars, but that’s as good as it would get for the north Reno school. The SSHS spikers went on a 9-2 run to take a 14-8 lead and they never looked back en route to another 25-16 win.
Spanish Springs packed on the points early in Game 3 taking a 10-3 edge and never relinquishing it. The Cougars outscored North Valleys 13-3 in the second half of the game for the 25-10 final.
In the last league match of the season, Spanish Springs will play at McQueen on Tuesday. The last time the squads met, McQueen came out on top in five games.
“If we beat McQueen on Tuesday we have a chance to finish in a three-way tie for second place,” Sandomenico said. “We’ve got to take care of business against McQueen ... No matter what, if we beat McQueen, we’re in. We control our own destiny.”
Sandomenico believes that a key to defeating McQueen lies in his team’s serving.
“We’ve got to serve aggressively to beat McQueen because they’re good,” Sandomenico said. “We’ve got to get easy points with our serving and hitting. They really play great defense. So we have to be aggressive.”