Coloma spikers top Buchanan for league title
Published 12:03 am Thursday, March 2, 2006
By By TOM NYHUIS / Vigilant/Argus
NILES - The powerful Coloma Comets volleyball team has dominated the Lakeland Conference all season.
At Saturday's Lakeland Conference tournament at Brandywine High School, the Comets continued to show why they completed the league season undefeated.
Coloma nailed down their fourth straight conference title defeating Buchanan 25-17, 25-16 in the championship match.
For the power hitting Comets, it was their 36th consecutive conference win.
"The leadership of the seniors and juniors, they got us this far, we have a strong bunch of hitters right there and that helps a lot," Coloma coach Vince Strefling said. "Our starting setter, Liz Grootendorst went out earlier in the week and we had to rely on a freshman today to step up and get us this far today, Erica Bartholomew did a nice job leading this team."
"I thought we played fairly well throughout the day," Buchanan coach Lisa Holok said after the championship loss to the Comets. "We would be down a bit and than come back. The girls showed a lot of heart. They fought hard throughout the two final games. You can't give up 10 points in one rotation, that pretty much took us out of the second game."
Buchanan made the Comets fight for every point early in game one. The Bucks stayed right with the Comets, Buchanan tied the game at 12-12 before Coloma rolled off four points to take a 16-12 advantage. The Bucks could only cut the lead to three, 17-20 before the Comets reeled off the final five points to take the opening game. Coloma took an early 13-3 lead in the second game and the Bucks would not be a threat to the Comets the rest of the way.
Coloma advanced as the number one team out of pool A with a perfect 6-0 mark, while the Bucks were the number one seed team with a 4-2 pool B .
Buchanan's two losses came at the hands of Berrien Springs and Bridgman. Edwardsburg also finished with a 4-2 pool record, but head-to-head scoring with the Bucks gave Buchanan the number one seeding.
Buchanan fought back in the opening pool play game against the Eddies from a 10-0 deficit and pulled out a 25-21 victory and also won the second game 25-21.
Buchanan advanced to the championship game with 26-24, 25-16 wins over Brandywine and Coloma turned back Edwardsburg 25-18, 25-15.
Edwardsburg took third place honors with 25-12, 25-21 wins over the Bobcats who finished the day fourth. Berrien Springs defeated Bridgman for a fifth place finish with the Bees finishing the day in sixth. River Valley got past Cassopolis 25-17, 25-10 to finish seventh and eighth respectively.
Buchanan moved one spot in the overall standings from third to second behind the Comets. Bridgman, who came into the day in second place, ends the season in third after a sixth place tournament finish.
The Lady Eddies were 4-2 in pool play.
Edwardsburg defeated Bridgman, 25-21 and 25-21; and defeated Berrien Springs, 25-18 and 25-23.
The Lady Eddies lost to Buchanan, 24-25 and 17-25.
Cassopolis was 1-5 in pool play.
The Lady Rangers split with River Valley, 22-25 and 25-22; and lost to Coloma, 13-25 and 15-25; and to Brandywine, 22-25 and 11-25.
In the championship round, Cassopolis was defeated by Berrien Springs, 16-25 and 11-25. The Lady Rangers then lost in the 7th place game to River Valley, 17-25 and 10-25.