One trend has become glaringly apparentto Dublin Scioto High School girls volleyball coach Todd Huff after his team won 10 of its first 13 matches overall, including seven of eight in the OCC-Cardinal Division.

One trend has become glaringly apparentto Dublin Scioto High School girls volleyball coach Todd Huff after his team won 10 of its first 13 matches overall, including seven of eight in the OCC-Cardinal Division.

The Irish usually win matches when they block well and they struggle when they don't put up a big block.

Huff hopes his team is strong at the net defensively whenit plays league matches today at Westerville North and Tuesday at Westerville Central.

"The key for us has been our blocking," Huff said. "When our blocking is up, we've beaten somevery good teams like Westerville North (25-21, 25-19, 25-13 on Sept. 8) and Westerville Central (22-25, 25-20, 25-22, 25-17 on Sept. 10). When we've been slow on our blocks, our back row has gotten eaten up, as we saw in our losses to Gahanna (26-24, 25-20, 23-25, 25-19on Sept. 14) and Olentangy Liberty (25-15, 25-16, 25-20 on Sept. 15).

"These matches against Westerville North and Westerville Central are big ones when it comes to our OCC title chances and the girls know we're going to have to play great in every aspect of the game."

Through 11 matches, Jaimee O'Connell had 35 solo blocks and 18 assisted blocks, and Nina Zalenski had 20 solo blocks and 18 assisted blocks. Maria Destadio led the team in digs with 251, followed by O'Connell (205), Samantha Melchor (149) and Kate Henry (126).

"We beat Westerville North in three games last time, but they're feisty and we can't take any match for granted because everyone is getting better," Huff said. "Westerville Central has heavy hitters, but we were able to shut down their outside hitters with timely blocking last time. Jaimee O'Connell had a ton of blocks that night. Nina Zalenski andSarah Enrightgot up and slowed down their attack, too, and we played excellent defense in the back row. We'll need to match that effort with another great defensive performance to beat Westerville Central again."

Huff would like to see Scioto keep up its balanced offensive attack.

Through 11 matches, Mackenzie Dyson had 131 assists and 21 serving aces, Melchor had 76 assists, Kim Trask had 63 kills and an 85-percent hitting efficiency, Zalenski had an 87-percent hitting efficiency and Melchor had an 85-percent hitting efficiency.

"Our setter, Mackenzie Dyson, does a fantastic job of moving the ball around and not being readable," Huff said. "We've got a lot of people contributing and that's made us a tough team to stop. A lot of credit should go to Amanda Weissling. Amanda is a natural middle hitter, butLauren Tregohas been out with an illness and Amanda has stepped in and played outside hitter in her absence. She's been our MVP of the season thus far with her hitting and blocking."

Coffman went 4-0 last Saturday and Sunday to win the Gold Division of the Cincinnati Mother of Mercy Fall Classic.

The Shamrocks became the first Columbus team to win the event since Reynoldsburg in 1998.

Coffman was rankedsecond inthe Division I state poll behindCincinnati Ursuline Academy last week and was ranked ninth in the MaxPreps Xcellent 25 national poll.

"This was a huge tournament for us to win because some of the best teams from both Kentucky and Ohio were there, so it's an amazing accomplishment," coach Mary Anne Souder said. "I think we've proven that we can do well against this level of competition and that we can be a contender at the state level."

The Shamrocks opened last Saturday with a 25-17, 25-19 win over Park Hills (Ky.) Notre Dame Academy, beforedowning Vandalia-Butler 23-25, 25-10, 25-17 to qualify to the Gold Division.

"Notre Dame Academy is one of the top-ranked teams in Kentucky, but our blocking and serve-receive were great in that match," Souder said.

Coffman beat Cincinnati McAuley 25-18, 25-18 in a semifinal, before defeating Rocky River Magnificat 25-23, 25-11 in the final. Magnificat was ranked sixth in the state poll.

"These matches have really prepared us for postseason play," Souder said. "We raised our level of play and really lit it up in the second game of the Magnificat match. Lindsey Zitzke really did a great job setting. She's the quarterback of our team."


At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Coffman, Jerome and Scioto girls volleyball teams:

COFFMAN

*Sept. 22 -- DefeatedUpper Arlington 25-22, 25-19, 25-22

Sept 24--Def. Reynoldsburg 25-12, 25-12, 25-11

Last Saturday -- Def. Park Hills (Ky.) Notre Dame Academy 25-17, 25-19; def. Vandalia-Butler 23-25, 25-10, 25-17

Last Sunday -- Def. Cincinnati McAuley 25-18, 25-18; def.Rocky River Magnificat 25-23, 25-11

Last Tuesday -- Played Groveport

Last Wednesday -- Played Jerome

*Today -- Home vs. Thomas Worthington

*Tuesday -- At Hilliard Darby

Of note: The Shamrocks were14-0 overall before last Tuesday and are5-0 in the OCC-Central.

*OCC-Central match

JEROME

*Sept. 22 -- Lost toWesterville Central 25-22, 17-25, 25-22, 23-25, 15-7

*Sept. 24--Lost toWesterville North 25-7, 25-9, 25-17

*Last Tuesday -- Played Liberty

Last Wednesday -- Played Coffman

*Today -- Home vs. Westerville South

*Tuesday -- At Olentangy

*Wednesday -- At Marysville

Of note: The Celtics were 2-10 overall and 1-7 in the OCC-Cardinal before last Tuesday.

*OCC-Cardinal match

SCIOTO

*Sept. 22 -- Def. Marysville 25-19, 21-25, 25-6, 25-21

*Last Monday -- Def. Olentangy 21-25, 25-13, 25-18, 25-16

*Last Tuesday -- PlayedWesterville South

*Today -- At Westerville North

Saturday -- At Granville vs. Granville and Hamilton Township

*Tuesday -- At Westerville Central

Of note: The Irish were 10-3 overall and 7-1 in the OCC-Cardinal before last Tuesday.

*OCC-Cardinal match