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The Daily



10-08-03: Bulldogs clinch share of WBL title


The Celina volleyball team tightened its grip on the Western Buckeye League title as the Bulldogs clinched at least a share of the title following a 15-6, 15-3 win over Wapakoneta on Tuesday.
It’s the third straight WBL crown for the Bulldogs who are now 15-3 overall and 8-0 in league play. Celina can clinch the outright title on Thursday with a win on the road in St. Marys.
“Winning a share of the WBL title is a great accomplishment,” said a happy Celina head coach Nikki Taylor-Etzler. “It was one of our team goals before the season started, but what we really want to do is win the WBL outright so we have to keep our focus and play well to beat a very good St. Marys team on Thursday.”
Wapakoneta falls to 5-14 on the season and 2-5 in the WBL.
Wapakoneta never really put up much of a stand as the Redskins’ nine total points in the two games came as a result of Celina errors.
It wasn’t like Celina made many mistakes during the match, the mistakes just came at scoring opportunities for Wapakoneta.
Celina led 3-2 before putting a 9-1 run together to jump out to the 12-3 advantage. Betsy Hone and Jamie Siefker led the charge for Celina during the run. Hone had three kills while Siefker added two more kills to highlight the run. Two Celina errors only delayed a 15-6 first game win.
A barrage of service errors kept the scoring minimal through the first rotation for both squads, but then Traci Stoner and Kelsey Fleck changed all that.
Stoner had a block and a kill while Fleck had two kills during Hone’s service game as the Bulldogs built their lead to 6-0. Wapakoneta clawed back behind two Celina errors, but that didn’t slow down the Bulldogs multi-dimensional offensive attack.
Holding a 7-2 advantage, Celina rallied for seven straight points to push its lead to 14-2. Hone again led the charge with four kills while Megan Harner added an ace during the spurt.
Hone played strong at the net all night long as the freshman middle-hitter led the Celina offensive attack with 11 kills while Kelsey Fleck added eight kills and Siefker five kills with Harner adding two aces.
“Betsy attacked really well and our setter (Stoner) did a great job of setting our other hitters up as well,” said Taylor-Etzler. “It’s pretty exciting with the options that we have on offense with various hitters that we can use.”
There’s just one more league game left as the Bulldogs look to pick up their 23rd WBL title all-time and eighth in the last decade, and that game is against archrival St. Marys.
“The girls were really ready for this game because it was senior night and they knew that a share for the league title was on the line,” said Taylor-Etzler after Tuesday’s victory. “The girls didn’t celebrate very much after the match at all because I think that they’re still really focused on St. Marys. There’s a lot on the line and with the rivalry with the two cities it should be a great night. I think that we will be ready to play on Thursday.”


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