Kouskousakis has 11 kills, but Rochester falls to Wabash in 4
Wabash star hitter Morris limited to back row
BY VAL TSOUTSOURIS
Sports Editor, RTC
Rochester volleyball coach Erin Leap did not like her team’s energy in its home match against Wabash at the RHS gym on Sept. 27, and it cost them a chance at an impressive Three Rivers Conference win.
Wabash pulled out a 25-16, 22-25, 25-22, 25-15 win thanks to 15 kills each from freshman Bryleigh Boggs and senior Jade Stumbo.
Faryn Morris, who is Wabash’s leading hitter, played but was limited to the back row and had zero kills. It was unclear if coach Katie Cromer was using Morris strategically against a sectional opponent like the Lady Zs or if Morris was nursing an injury.
Alexa Kouskousakis had 11 kills and Kylie Coleman and Lillee Lett had six kills each. Kennedy Leap had five kills and a team-high three blocks. Kylee Freant had three aces.
Kouskousakis also had 29 digs, Rily Holloway had 21 digs and 22 serves received, and Mia Howdeshell and Lett had 13 digs each. Howdeshell also had 15 serves received.
Lett also had 19 assists while Kouskousakis had seven.
Rochester fell to 10-13 overall and 4-3 in the Three Rivers Conference.
“I would describe it as very low,” coach Leap said when asked to describe her team’s energy level. “We did not have a lot of energy at all. … Everybody was excited for this game, or so I thought, but then once we started playing, I just told the girls we never ignited. We never caught fire. Even in Set 2, when we won, it just never felt like we wanted it.”
Rochester evened the match in Game 2, building a 23-16 lead on a Kouskousakis kill, a Wabash error, a Wabash whiff and a Freant ace. Wabash scored the next five points to get within 23-21, but a Kouskousakis kill and a Coleman kill off the block helped ward off the comeback.
Game 3 was tied at 18, but a Sydney Sickafus kill, an Ashlynn Cruz ace and a Coleman kill error put Wabash ahead 21-18.
Rochester would get back within 23-21 on a Kennedy Leap kill, but a ding dong play got Wabash to set point and a service error gave Wabash the game.
Wabash then jumped out to a 13-6 lead in Game 4 and pulled away.
“They’re just scrappy, and they never give up,” coach Leap said of the Lady Apaches. “The things you think are going to go down don’t go down. They just keep playing, and then you’re surprised when the ball comes over the net. And they’ve always been like that, but tonight, I feel like if we would have been playing like we had been playing the past few games, it might have been a different outcome.”
Lady Z notes
The teams could meet again in the sectional final at Rochester on Oct. 15.
Rochester junior defensive specialist Emma Sells did not play. Coach Leap declined comment when asked about Sells’ whereabouts.
Rochester won the JV match 25-18, 25-23.
Wabash def. Rochester, 25-16, 22-25, 25-22, 25-15
Kylie Coleman – 6 kills, 2 aces, 1 block, 1 dig, 4 serves received; Kennedy Leap – 5 kills, 1 ace, 3 blocks, 2 digs; Kylee Freant – 2 kills, 3 aces, 8 digs, 1 assist, 4 serves received; Alexa Kouskousakis – 11 kills, 1 ace, 1 block, 29 digs, 7 assists, 6 serves received; Lillee Lett – 6 kills, 13 digs, 19 assists, 6 serves received; Audrey Bolinger – 3 kills, 1 block, 6 digs; Rily Holloway – 21 digs, 1 assist, 22 serves received; Darah Strasser – 4 digs, 3 assists, 16 serves received; Mia Howdeshell – 13 digs, 15 serves received
JV: Rochester def. Wabash, 25-18, 25-23
Rochester JV stats
Mia Howdeshell – 3 kills; Haley Durkes – 4 aces, 9 assists; Rylee Clevenger – 13 digs, 9 serves received; Darah Strasser – 11 digs; Keyton Doran – 9 digs; Baylee Freant – 9 serves received