Austintown Fitch sweeps Harding in three sets

WARREN — Austintown Fitch’s volleyball team surged ahead in three straight sets, which proved too much for host Warren G. Harding.

The 3-0 win gives the Falcons (3-2) the lead in the All-American Conference Red Tier.

“I think we started out strong in the beginning,” Falcons coach Jody Bartlett said. “We kind of lost the momentum a little bit toward the end. I felt we were struggling a bit with our passing. Overall, I think we did all right. I think we served strongly for sure.”

The Falcons took the first set, 25-7. Middle hitter Alaina Kapturasky scored 10 points during the set and Emma Bartlett added six.

The second set was more of the same for the Falcons. Despite the Raiders’ early push, it was quickly squashed by the Falcons’ net game, resulting in another 25-7 score.

Gracie Mcwreath captured seven of those points throughout the set, giving her the lead in points. Captain Lanie Simons scored four points and Bartlett got three of her own.

The third set swung more in the Raiders’ direction, as they maintained a lead for a large portion of time. The Falcons’ attack proved too strong as they wrestled the lead back to pull off the sweep, 25-22. Raiders captain Nalida McQueen scored three points throughout the set, while Makaila Powell led the team with four points.

Kapturasky and freshman Alyssa Leskovac each scored six points in the final set, giving the Falcons the edge they needed to secure the victory.

“(In the third set) I think we were in a good place in the beginning, but again I think we struggled with passing,” Bartlett said. “They made some nice defensive plays, they had some nice ups, and they had some nice hits at us.”

The Raiders head to Boardman to take on the Spartans on Thursday.

“We need to keep working hard,” Bartlett said. “I tell my girls every day. We have practice tomorrow, we have to keep working and prepare. We have to go into every match giving it our all.”