NORTH JUDSON | With the way Boone Grove came out in its first game against North Judson on Thursday, it looked as if the Wolves were primed for a good showing in the sectional opener.
However, that wasn’t the case as the host Bluejays fought back to sweep Boone Grove 25-22, 25-17, 25-23 in a season-ending loss in the Class 2A North Judson Sectional.
The Wolves fell behind 2-0 in the first game before pulling ahead 14-7, the biggest lead they would see in the match.
However, North Judson clawed back and took the lead, which was just a sign of things to come.
“We just didn’t have enough offense,” Boone Grove coach Linda Eleftheri said. “We played our entire match on defense.”
Even in the second game, Boone Grove was up 6-5 early, but the Bluejays would fight back for a 12-8 lead and force Eleftheri to call a timeout. After that, North Judson cruised along and slowly built its lead.
“We forced our setters to try and set things we just couldn’t get to,” Eleftheri said.
The third game went right down to the wire, and the Wolves did hold a 17-16 lead, but North Judson was able to fend off any offense Boone Grove tried to muster.
Had it not been for the efforts of middle hitter Nicole Malouhos, North Judson may have been able to pull away. The 6-feet-1-inch junior contributed four block kills, and countless other redirections of potential North Judson points.
“She’s definitely a good blocker,” Eleftheri said. “She makes teams have to go around here and possibly makes us able to defend a little easier, because they can’t go over her.”
The Wolves (16-10) will lose six seniors to graduation, leaving some big holes to fill next season.
“It’s an enthusiastic group, and we’ll push really hard,” Eleftheri said. “I think we’ll be OK.”