Independence gained some momentum heading into the postseason.
The Blue Devils, who last week clinched a share of a third straight Chagrin Valley Conference championship, split a pair of matches at Huron on Saturday. Independence, ranked No. 14 in Division III, beat Division I Oregon Clay, 2-0, then dropped a heartbreaker to Huron, ranked No. 2 in Division III, 2-1.
“It was a good day,” said Independence coach Megan Osysko. “It was a good test for us. We needed to see where we’re at going into the playoffs. We just need to continue to play defense against these teams. In the first game against Huron we limited them in the first 10 points to one kill. That just says a lot about our defense and keeping the ball up.”
Oregon Clay gave Independence all it could handle but the Blue Devils won the back-and-forth match, 26-24, 25-23.
“It was a battle,” Osysko said. “We had close games both times so it was nice to see us finish both of those.”
Independence scored the final six points in a 25-19 win over Huron in the first set of the Blue Devils’ second match of the day. The Tigers responded by jumping out to a seven point lead in the second set and held on to win, 25-15.
Huron edged Independence in the decisive set, 26-24.
“In the second game we were down in a 7-0 deficit,” Osysko said. “At that point we just wanted to try to get as many points as we could to get some momentum going into game three. We brought it back to 15 but it’s hard to bring it all the way back.”
The Blue Devils improved to 15-5 overall with two regular season games remaining. They travel to Orange on Tuesday, where they hope to clinch the CVC title outright with a win, and then finish up with a home game against Geneva on Thursday.
Independence earned the No. 3 seed in the Elyria District and will open the tournament against Warrensville Heights on Tuesday, Oct. 20.