Losing close matches is something that often happens to young volleyball teams. Twinsburg is a young squad that had some recent battles in league play.
Twinsburg's latest National Division match in the Suburban League came Sept. 8 at home against Wadsworth. The Tigers played Wadsworth and battled, but lost 23-25, 15-25, 25-21, 20-25.
Senior libero Marie Piccone is the only returning starter from last year's unit. Piccone registered 26 digs against Wadsworth.
Wadsworth was led by Kacie Evans, who had a monster game with 20 kills and three blocks.
Pacing Twinsburg in kills was junior outside hitter Bella Varga, who had 13 and also added a pair of blocks. Varga is the only other Tiger to return from last year.
Junior setter Cassidy Liotta had 31 assists and three service aces in a solid effort.
Sophomore outside hitter Simone Gest had her moments with 23 digs and 10 kills.
"We had a tough week, playing two of the best programs in the league -- North Royalton and Brecksville -- and we are improving every day," said head coach Tonia Brennen.
Twinsburg won the JV match over the Grizzlies 25-19, 25-22.
The Tigers lost a similar marathon match Sept. 6 at home against Stow-Munroe Falls in a league contest.
Stow (5-1 overall and 3-1 in the league) won 31-29, 18-25, 15-25, 26-24, 3-15.
Liotta and Gest had big games as did Piccone and Varga for the Lady Tigers.
Piccone had 35 digs and was active while Liotta put up 35 assists and 22 digs.
In kills, Gest excelled with 15 and Varga had 13. Gest also had 22 digs.
"Our serve receive is getting stronger and our offense is coming along," said Brennen. "We are working on developing our offense as a whole, invoking all players and creating a quick offense."
First-year varsity senior Shelbi Netzband has been instrumental this season for Twinsburg in the back row. The active defensive specialist had three service aces.
"Key players that have stepped up and been key leaders are Bella Varga, Marie Piccone, and Shelbi Netzband," said Brennen.
"We are becoming stronger as a team and our bond is developing," added the coach. "They are becoming accustomed to the quicker pace of the varsity level game. I see great things to come."
Twinsburg also saw its JV and freshman teams win over Stow. The JV won 25-17, 19-25, 25-23. The freshman were winners by a score of 25-15, 25-21.
In upcoming play, the Lady Tigers (0-6) will play at Macedonia Nordonia Sept. 15 (6:30 p.m.), compete at the Chagrin Falls Tournament Sept. 17 (9 a.m.), and host Cuyahoga Falls in league play Feb. 20 (6:30 p.m.).