By JARROD ULREY
ThisWeek Staff Writer

For the second consecutive Division III tournament match, the Ready High School girls volleyball team got behind early.

On Saturday at Pickerington North in a district final against Elgin, the Silver Knights couldn't figure out a way to rally as they lost 25-19, 28-26, 19-25, 25-20.

After winning its first district championship a year ago, Ready entered the postseason as the second seed while the Comets were seeded fifth.
Elgin, however, figured out how to hold what had been a potent Silver Knights offense led by senior Taylor Riggs and junior Erin Sekinger in check most of the way.

The Comets improve to 22-3 and will play in a regional semifinal Wednesday.

Ready, which rallied to beat Amanda-Clearcreek 22-25, 25-13, 25-15, 25-15 in a district semifinal on Wednesday, finishes 21-4.

"We didn't put them away early, and that's been an Achilles heel of ours all season where we've let average teams stay with us," coach Mike Kusan said. "We had leads and couldn't keep them. They did a good job of keeping us from getting the momentum."

After Elgin won the first game, Ready led 6-5 in the second game but then fell behind by as much as four and never led again until it was 24-23. Elgin got back-to-back points from Haleigh Blevins to win the game.

The Silver Knights took the momentum they'd gained from nearly winning game two and took a 19-10 lead in the third game before the Comets rallied to within 23-17. Kills by Sekinger add Leah Caldwell to end the third game cut the deficit to 2-1.

Ready and Elgin were tied at 18 in the fourth game before the Comets finally took control to close out the win.

It was the final match for Riggs, Susie Covey and Annie Schmidt of Ready, although Riggs was the only senior regular.

Elgin won its first district title since 2001.

"They have some top-notch hitters, and we had to shut them down a little bit at a time," Elgin coach Kory Ute said. "We have about one unforced period every match where we struggle, and if we can keep those to a minimum like we did today, that's all we can do. They came out after we lost the third game and said that this was not going to go five (games)."