2009-11-04 / Sports

Archbold Vs. Otsego Huron Vs. Elgin

Div. III Volleyball Regional

The Division III regional volleyball tournament at Liberty-Benton High School features quality programs with a combined record of 91-9.

All have top-ranked opponents on their schedules.

Archbold (26-0) battles Otsego (22-3) tonight, Wednesday, in a Division III regional semifinal at Liberty-Benton High School.

The contest begins at 6 p.m.

One of the Knights’ losses was to Archbold, Saturday, Oct. 3. The two teams met in the championship match of the Streak Spiketacular, and the Streaks prevailed 25-23, 26-24.

Otsego tied with Eastwood for the Suburban Lakes League title; both finished 11-1. Otsego’s league defeat was a five-game loss to Eastwood, a D-II team, on Sept. 17.

Bowling Green, a D-I team, is the only other team to have defeated the Knights this season. That Sept. 19 match went four games.

BG was ranked 18th in the final D-I poll, and lost to Findlay in their district semifinal.

Huron Vs. Elgin

In the second D-III regional semifinal of the night at Liberty-Benton, Huron (22- 3) plays Elgin (22-3).

Huron last made it to the state tournament in 2006, when they lost in the semifi nals. The Tigers won the Sandusky Bay Conference with a 13-1 record. Their only league loss came at the hands of Edison, a D-II school, in a five-game season opener.

Huron’s other two losses were to Padua Franciscan, which finished first in D-II in the coaches poll, on Sept. 19, and Findlay, a D-I team that finished 10th in the coaches poll, on Sept. 30. Since then the Tigers have reeled off 13 straight victories.

Elgin won the Mid-Ohio Athletic Conference with a 13-0 record. The Comets’ only losses were to Gilead Christian, a D-IV team, on Sept. 1; Hopewell-Loudon, a D-IV team, on Sept. 26; and Bucyrus Wynford, a D-IV team, on Oct. 17.

Gilead Christian is 26-0, and was ranked eighth in Div. IV in the final coaches poll of the season. Hopewell Loudon is 24-1 and was ranked second in D-IV in the final coaches poll.

Regional Final

Wednesday night winners play for the regional title and a trip to the state tournament, Saturday, Nov. 7, 2 p.m., at Liberty-Benton.

The Division III state tournament is Friday and Saturday, Nov. 13-14, at Wright State University, Dayton.

D-III Sweet 16 Facts

Eleven of the 16 Div. III regional semifinalists were ranked in the top 20 in the final Ohio High School Volleyball Coaches Association poll.

They include Tuscarawas Valley (1), Archbold (2), Versailles (3) Adena (4), Gates Mills Gilmour Academy (6), Heath (8), Bishop Fenwick (9), Smithville (11), Huron (14), Roger Bacon (16), and New Middletown Springfield (17).

The five unranked regional semifinalists are Cleveland Villa-Angela St. Joseph, Wheelersburg, Albany Alexander, Otsego, and Elgin.

Many have experience at the state tourney within the last four years.

Gates Mills Gilmour Academy was state runner-up last year, and made it to the state semifinals in 2007.

Cleveland Villa-Angela St. Joseph was the 2006 state runner-up and the 2005 state champion.

Alexander won the state championship last year, was state runner-up in 2007, and was a state semifinalist in 2006.

Adena was a D-IV state semifinalist in 2006.

Huron made it to the state semifinals in 2006.

Versailles was a state semifinalist in 2008.

Roger Bacon was in the state semifinals in 2007, and won the D-IV state championship in 2005.

Archbold-Huron History

Archbold and Huron have met in the regional tournament before.

In 1998, Archbold defeated Huron in the regional fi- nal 9-15, 15-10, 15-7 (before high schools started using rally scoring). The Streaks finished the season undefeated at 30-0 and won the Div. III state title.

Huron got revenge in 2001, when the Tigers beat AHS in the regional final, 15-5, 15-17, 15-12.

The last time AHS won the district championship was in 2002, when Betsy Stotzer, Katie Krueger, Chelsea Rychener, and Cindy Allan were seniors.

Cindy’s younger sister, Andrea, is a senior on this year’s team.

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