CAMDEN — Preble Shawnee volleyball hosted Eaton on Thursday, Aug. 21 in Southwestern Buckeye League crossover conference play. The Arrows were able to pull off the victory in four sets, beating Eaton 25-23, 25-22, 20-25, 25-16.
“You can tell how hard (Eaton) has worked in the preseason,” said Shawnee’s head coach Kristy Cottingim. “As the season progresses and they get more playing time together, they are going to be a difficult team to beat.”
Eaton was able to put a lot of pressure on Shawnee, but overall did not execute the game plan head coach Parker Fields had set up for the Eagles.
“We had a game plan going in and one of them was to limit the touches that (Abby) Woodard would get and make some of their role players step up,” said Fields. “I thought we executed the plan as well as we could of at the net, but behind the service line, we went tentative, and served right to (Woodard).”
Woodard led the Arrows, finishing the match with 10 kills. She also contributed 16 service points, 23 serve receptions and 12 digs.
Although Fields felt his team’s execution wasn’t always there, he took away some positive components of the match as well.
“I really liked our team persona throughout the match. I was really happy with our out-of-system play. Meghan Puckett was huge for us up front, and really drove hard throughout the match,” said Fields. “Although we don’t like the outcome of the match, we felt pretty good about where we were afterward, and the outcome may have been different if we had stuck to the game plan. Shawnee is very good, and I will be very surprised if they don’t take another Buckeye Division (title) this year.”
Puckett led the Eagles with 12 kills, six blocks, and two digs. Also helping out Eaton on the evening was Allison Collins (eight kills), Jordyn Worley (14 assists), Jackie McCafferty (14 digs), and Emma McKinney (13 assists).
Shawnee finished the match with Emma Walker leading in serve receptions (24) and blocks (three), Sidney Hibbard leading assists (24,) Adrianna Moore leading digs (14,) Elise Walker leading serving (18 service points, three aces.)
Shawnee finished 4-0 on the week, getting a big non-conference victory over Fenwick (32-30, 25-23, 25-23)
“It was a tough match. Fenwick was very good defensively. We had to use all aspects of our offense to terminate rallies,” said Cottingim. “Had many long rallies and the score was tight all three sets. We played an outstanding match with very few unforced errors. Our senior leadership and experience was the difference in that match.”
Leading the Arrows in that match was Abby Woodard with 13 digs, 10 kills and 16 service points. Emma Walker also contributed 10 kills and nine digs with Erica Halcomb leading the Arrows with 17 service points. Adrianna Moore led serve receptions (37) and aces (four). She also contributed nine digs. Elise Walker led in assists, finishing with 13 on the evening. She also contributed seven digs and 15 service points. Sidney Hibbard contributed 12 assists.
They also defeated National Trail (25-15, 25-14) and Valley View (25-21, 25-18) in the week.
Eaton finished 1-2 on the week, beating Newton (25-23, 26-24) but losing to Dixie (7-25, 16-25) during a tri-meet.
Against Newton, the Eagles were lead by Meghan Puckett with seven kills, Emma McKinney with 10 assists, and Brandi Sittloh with four digs.
“Newton has a nice team that will win ball games in the CCC. They are really scrappy. We came from behind in both games. I am really happy with the way that we overcame adversity. Meghan Puckett, once again, was our bright spot, with really aggressive net play,” said Parker.
In the Dixie match, Eaton was led by Brittany George with four kills and Emma McKinney with 10 assists.
Eaton played Franklin on Tuesday. They also have Bellbrook on Thursday, Aug. 28, along with Edgewood on Saturday, Aug.