Unforced errors hurt Oak Harbor in loss

A series of errors plagued the Oak Harbor volleyball team as they dropped their third league match of the year, 3-1, to Cascade on Thursday night.

“We had a lot of unforced errors at crucial times,” head coach Kerri Molitor said. “It was a tough match to lose, the girls feel like we should have won.”

The Wildcats took the first game 25-16 and appeared to be in good shape. A slow start in game two is where the problems began for Oak Harbor, as they fell 25-23.

“We were down by a lot and came back,” Molitor said. “We just started our comeback too late.”

Oak Harbor was able to make the game close by attacking the net and playing what Molitor considers one of their strengths.

“When we started attacking the ball, that’s when we started taking over the game,” she said. “We are an attacking team and that’s what we have to do to be successful.”

After going up in game three, the Cats began to self-destruct committing a series of errors which left the door open for the Bruins. Cascade aggressively came back to win the third and fourth games by identical scores of 26-24.

“Looking at the stats, I don’t believe we lost,” Molitor said. “They all played really well together.”

Junior Heidi McNeill led the way for Oak Harbor with 17 kills on six blocks, while sophomore Jennifer Muzzall had nine kills on six blocks.

Sophomore Ashley Kingma had a big day for the Wildcats with 38 assists, while senior Rachel Pitt had 35 digs.

Although they may not have had the stats, seniors Sarah Bratt and Laresse Santos came in and also made big plays for the Cats.

With two league games to go Oak Harbor will need to bear down if they want to get one of the four guaranteed district playoff spots or a chance to be the fifth place “pig tail” representative from the WesCo North. Now at 3-3 in league, they are tied with Monroe for fourth place, while Cascade and Mount Vernon, both are tied in third with 3-2 league records.

Oak Harbor plays Mount Vernon, Tuesday, Oct. 28 at home and travels to Monroe in their final game of the season.

“We kind of dug ourselves a hole, we have to perform well this next week,” Molitor said. “If we want to finish in the top four I’m thinking we’re going to have to beat Mount Vernon and Monroe.”

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