By Tommy Keeler Jr.
WOODSTOCK -- Warren County volleyball coach Sarah Putnam picked just the right time to call timeouts on Thursday night, and her team responded each time.
The Wildcats erased deficits in each of the first two sets on their way to a 3-0 (25-23, 25-22, 25-16) win over Central in Bull Run District volleyball action.
"One thing about my team is that they hardly ever give up," Putnam said. "They know that when I call a timeout it's for a reason. We make adjustments, we talk about a few things, and then its their job to go out there and fix whatever we discussed."
Warren County took an early 12-6 lead on Central in the first set, aided by two kills from Crystal Utter, one from Brooke Post and a block by Arie Roth.
The Falcons responded with a 12-3 run, sparked by one kill and three blocks by Tiffany Riggs and two kills by Rebecca Truban.
With the Wildcats trailing 18-15, Putnam called a timeout and the Wildcats rallied. Warren County went on a 5-0 run, including two aces by Kylee Eyler and a kill by Post.
The two teams went back and forth until the Wildcats finished off the set with a 4-1 run. Warren County's Autumn Troxell sealed the 25-23 set with a block.
"We started out slow tonight a little flat-footed," Putnam said. "I think once we started sweating a little bit, we got into our groove and started to play Wildcat volleyball."
Central responded in the second set and grabbed a 20-14 lead. The Falcons built the lead with six service aces in the set.
Once again, Putnam called timeout and the Wildcats turned things around. Warren County closed the set with an 11-2 run.
A block by Roth, and a kill each by Eyler and Post help tie things up at 21-21. The two teams traded points, but then a push by Post and a kill from Troxell gave the Wildcats a 24-22 lead. A Central error sealed the set for the Wildcats.
The Wildcats were coming off a tough four-set loss to Skyline on Tuesday, and Troxell said the team really learned from that defeat.
"[Against Skyline] we were down and we really couldn't pick ourselves back up," Troxell said. "This game when we got down we picked ourselves right back up and just kept going on."
Three kils and a block by Troxell helped the Wildcats go on a 9-1 run in the third set for a 15-6 advantage.
The Wildcats (6-6, 5-4 Bull Run) kept the lead to at least eight points the rest of the way.
"I think we got down on ourselves in that third game, and that hurt us because we couldn't bounce back," Central coach Christy Barb said. "We were making mistakes that we usually don't make.
"We bounced back against Rappahannock [County on Tuesday] and won the next three sets so we can do it. They just need to believe that they can do it."
Truban led the Falcons (4-8, 2-7 Bull Run) with four kills and three aces. Kyla Strother had three kills and an ace, and Jamison Cook had one kill and four aces for the Falcons. Central won two matches earlier in the week, including the win against Rappahannock County.
"I have every bit of confidence in our girls," Barb said. "We still have a lot more wins in our future."
Troxell had six kills and six blocks to lead the Wildcats. Post had four kills and five aces, and Roth two kills and two blocks for the Wildcats.
Troxell said she has confidence that the Wildcats best matches are still ahead of them.
"I still think were not playing the best that we could play, but we aren't doing bad," Troxell said. "We're not making the worst mistakes, and we're definitely picking each other up. Once we get it all down we should do pretty well."
Contact Assistant Sports Editor Tommy Keeler at 540-465-5137 ext. 155, or firstname.lastname@example.org Follow on Twitter @tkeelernvd