ROACHDALE -- The North Putnam volleyball team fell to the Cascade Cadets in three sets 12-25, 14-25, and 18-25.
Cascade came ready to play and took an immediate lead after it gained the first three points unanswered by the Cougars.
The first point for the Cougars came after Megan Robinson was able to make a play at the net and Cascade didn't respond.
Numerous errors by North Putnam and powerful play at the net by Cascade's Brittany Burdge gave the Cadets the next eight points, bringing the game to 8-1.
The Cougars were able put two more points on the board but it didn't faze the Cadets. They made sure to take advantage of every mistake by the Cougars and took a 14-3 lead.
Cascade also had errors which enabled the Cougars to put more points on the board. However, for the four points that they gave up, they were given seven which expanded their lead to 21-7.
A spike from Mackensy Asbell, an error by Cascade, and a play by Danielle Harbison and Megan Robinson brought Cougars' score to 10. More errors and two big plays but Burdge gave the Cadets to win the set 25-12.
The second set didn't go any smoother for the Cougars. They were able to get the first point of the set due to a serving error by Cascade by that would be the only lead they saw.
The Cadets were able to score 10 unanswered points giving them the 10-1 lead. They did so by taking advantage of multiple errors by the Cougars and a play at the net by Bridget Smith.
By taking advantage of errors made by the Cadets and a block by Samantha Lucas, the Cougars were able to pick up five more points, bringing the game to 13-6.
From this point on, it seemed as if North Putnam was just reacting to the way Cascade played. It was another three points for the Cadets before the Cougars scored again and that point only came due to a service error by Cascade. After that point, they would not see another one until the Cadets had scored seven more unanswered. Asbell and Morgan Robinson were able to connect and put one over for a point. But by this point, there was no turning back for the Cadets. They ended the set 25-14.
The third and final set was played much closer and the Cougars looked more aggressive.
Cascade was able to score the first two points before a spike by Megan Robinson put the Cougars on the board.
Just when they seemed to be on the right track, the mistakes showed up in the way North Putnam played.
They trailed 1-4 before they scored off another play by Robinson, giving them their second point. Samantha Lucas was able to get a block, which helped give the Cougars their third point.
Both the Cadets and the Cougars made errors which led to the game being close in score.
It seemed to be whichever team made the least amount of mistakes with the occasional play without mistakes. Morgan Robinson and Katie Welsh were able to make a play on a hard spike by Burdge bring the game to 5-7 with Cascade still leading.
Harbison was able to set a ball up allowing Welsh to score, bringing the game within one at 8-9.
However, the Cadets were able to score five unanswered points. From this point, the Cougars were playing catch up and committed errors which made it very easy for Cascade to a 16-10 lead.
Once they had that large of a lead, they took off with it.
Allysia Roberts contributed to the cause with a play at the net for a point. Burdge was a huge part of the Cascade game plan. She had two aces late in the game, bringing her team within three points of winning.
The rest of Cascade's points would be results of mistakes by North Putnam. Cascade won the set 25-18.
North Putnam coach Jill Schreiber was disappointed with her team's performance on Thursday.
"We were beat before we even walked out on the court," Schreiber said. "My team plays with no heart or desire to win. We were intimidated because Cascade is a good team and are ranked. But this is no excuse to come out and play like we did tonight.
"I'm very disappointed in the way we played tonight," she continued. "We were making mistakes that we, as a varsity team, should not be making at this point in the season. It seems as if we are taking steps in the wrong direction. We should be coming together as a team."
Schreiber said she feels her team isn't playing together and don't covering for each other when one is having a bad game.
"Our little mental mistakes hurt us, mistakes that should not be made. We have some big games coming up and we have to learn really quickly to change our mental game. These are games we should win, but as long as we play for me and not as a team, we will be lucky to come close to winning," she said.
At North Putnam
North Putnam 12 14 18
Cascade 25 25 25
North Putnam 9 12
Cascade 25 25