Senior Brooke Heche of Wawasee digs the ball during Thursday night's home game against Warsaw. Photo by Gary Nieter, Times-Union
Senior Brooke Heche of Wawasee digs the ball during Thursday night's home game against Warsaw. Photo by Gary Nieter, Times-Union
SYRACUSE – Aces galore.

Warsaw’s varsity volleyball team racked up 24 aces, including 14 from Katie Swanson, to win 3-0 in a Northern Lakes Conference match Thursday at Wawasee.

“They seem to like serving in air-conditioned gyms,” Warsaw coach Rick Ashmore joked. “Hot gyms, they struggle.”

The Lady Tigers won 25-14, 25-16, 25-13.

“We had a very good practice yesterday, very enthusiastic, very upbeat,” Ashmore said. “Everybody moving, talking, and I think it came over to today.”

The Lady Tigers (16-5, 3-1 NLC) were energized from the start, with Kacy Bragg serving up three aces at the beginning of Game 1.

Wawasee hung tough with Warsaw until midway through the match. With the score 15-13, Swanson stepped to the service line.

“I just felt like I really haven’t been giving it my best lately, and I wanted to redeem that and show my team that I’m a lot better than that,” Swanson said.

Her redemption came in the form of top-spin jump serves. She recorded four aces to lead Warsaw on a 9-0 run, and the Lady Tigers finished Game 1 on a 10-1 run.

Game 2 was more of the same, with the Lady Warriors hanging tough until the score was once again 15-13 in Warsaw’s favor.

Swanson jogged back to the service line and confidently served up five aces in a row. The Lady Tigers finished the game on a 10-3 run.

“My team was just a little too slow on serve-receive and on defense today,” said Wawasee coach Kayla Riportella. “Warsaw seemed to catch us on our heels and caught us standing up a lot on defense.”

Warsaw shook off Wawasee early in Game 3 to roll to the match victory.

“I just think the energy on the court was fantastic,” Swanson said. “We honestly started so strong, and that helps with everything. You just perform way better when the energy’s high and there’s no stress.”

Riportella said she is glad for Wawasee to have the opportunity to play powerhouses like Warsaw.

“We’re learning how to play consistently and competitively, and not let a tough team get in our heads,” she said. “Tonight we didn’t do it, but we’re not done yet.”



WARSAW def. WAWASEE 25-14, 25-16, 25-13

Warsaw leaders – Betty Barnett 11 kills; Katie Swanson 8 kills, 5 blocks, 14 aces; Allison Heinrich 6 kills; Kylie Smith 12 digs; Kacy Bragg 25 assists

Wawasee leaders – Madison Simmons 4 kills, 7 digs; Elizabeth Kleopfer 10 assists; Peyton Rookstool 4 kills.

JV – Warsaw def. Wawasee 21-25, 25-18, 15-18

Warsaw leaders – Tessa Wood 8 kills; Sydney Morel 5 kills; Gwyn Bellamy 6 digs, 6 aces; Sierra Derrossett 5 digs; Kendra Love 6 digs; Katie Schmidt 11 digs, Abbie Porter 17 assists.

Wawasee leaders – Leslie Vazquez 4 kills, 8 digs, 5 blocks; Kai Jamora 8 assists; Morgan Heche 6 digs

Freshman – Warsaw 25-6, 25-19