Northwestern Press

Friday, October 18, 2019
PRESS PHOTO BY RON GOWERSam McGinley of Northwestern hits the ball over the net while defending are Tamaqua’s Ella McLaughlin (14) and Leah Mateyak. PRESS PHOTO BY RON GOWERSam McGinley of Northwestern hits the ball over the net while defending are Tamaqua’s Ella McLaughlin (14) and Leah Mateyak.

Tigers top Tamaqua

Thursday, September 12, 2019 by Sam Matta tnsports@tnonline.com in Sports

Tamaqua had the momentum.

But Northwestern quickly seized it back.

The result was a 25-17, 25-18, 19-25, 25-15 nonleague victory for the Tigers last Wednesday night.

Northwestern seemed on its way to a sweep before the Raiders dug in and won the third set.

But with all the momentum on the Raiders’ side, Northwestern came out on fire to start the fourth set, and Tamaqua never recovered.

“Our players stepped up most of the match, especially in that fourth set,” said Northwestern coach Lexi Ashburne. “Brynn Buschta was excellent. She’s a junior setter who is so calm.

“The way she played along with Samantha (McGinley), Kylie (Wade), Ella (Carson) and Sara (Jenkins) allowed us to get this victory.”

Northwestern shot out to a 10-6 advantage in the first set. But much to Tamaqua’s credit, it bounced right back on the strong play of Kaitlyn Romig, Ella McLaughlin and Madison Baddick to forge a short-lived 14-13 lead.

Then unforced errors started to take their toll on the Raiders, as six times they either had set errors or return miscues before Wade served up an ace — one of her six on the evening — to secure the first set win.

In the second set, Tamaqua looked dead-in-the-water once again early in the match. Northwestern built a 21-13 cushion, only to watch Tamaqua surge right back to cut the lead to 23-17 thanks in part to the play of Baddick and McLaughlin. However, the Tigers had poise and eventually closed out the win on a McGinley point.

Tamaqua didn’t fold the tent, as it looked very impressive in gushing out to a 10-1 lead in the third set. That early boost was enough to carry the Raiders to the set win avoiding a sweep.

Undaunted, the Tigers shrugged off the set loss and went right to work in the fourth set, building commanding leads of 10-2 and 20-11 before closing out the victory.

Buschta had a team- and game-high eight kills and added four aces. McGinley posted six kills and six aces, as did Wade. Tamaqua’s Romig had four kills, two aces and two digs; McLaughlin tallied a kill, two aces and four digs.