HAMMOND | It's a little different when trophies are on the line.
Griffith lost to Gavit during the regular season in five games, then beat the Gladiators in two in tournament plays.
The Panthers swept Gavit 25-16, 25-22, 25-17 Thursday to advance to the second round of the Class 3A Clark sectional.
"(The difference was) knowing what the game was for," Panthers coach Kristi Hoese said. "We felt like tonight was the championship."
Hammond also advanced, winning the first match over Roosevelt 25-9, 25-9, 25-9.
Griffith was in control for almost the duration. The Panthers had an eight-point run in the first game, an eight-point run in the third game and never trailed in game two.
The only stumble was late in the second game when Gavit tied the game at 20-20. Hoese called a timeout.
"I just them, 'What are you here for? You know what you have to do. Play your game,'" Hoese said. "And they went back out and played their game."
The Gladiators may have let the nerves get to them in the first postseason game, coach Amy Osario said.
"They just didn't seem to be on today," Osario said. "They just didn't seem to have that fight in them to start off the game."
Osario tried moving some personnel around to jump start her squad in the third game, but it was too late.
"I was hoping to maybe get some girls fired up, try something new. It's worked in the past," Osario said. "I wanted to see if maybe that was the spark they needed to get going and unfortunately it didn't work out."
Hammond cruised through its meeting with Roosevelt. The Wildcats are already looking forward to the next round against crosstown rival Clark. The two split the regular season series.
"I think my girls are pretty fired up. They're ready to play Clark," coach Mary Hunter said. "We were using this game tonight as a practice game to work out some other stuff and build our confidence."