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Culver volleyball battles

After being swept at Scio earlier this season, the Culver volleyball team wasn't about to let that happen again.
   The Bulldogs didn't, taking the opening game of Thursday's Tri-River match. However, the visiting Loggers won 18-25, 25-11, 25-11, 25-20.
   "At Scio, we played better each game," said Culver coach Wendy Thompson. "Our goal was to play even better than we did at Scio. That's what we did in the opening game."
   Culver rolled to 10-5 and 16-7 leads, helped by two service aces by Megan Hamlin. Tayler Thompson, Julie Altig and Justine Lofting added kills.
   Culver closed out the match with a Thompson ace plus kills by Maria Ruiz and Lofting.
   Scio changed tactics after the opening game. The Loggers had hitting errors to give the Bulldogs seven points. Scio changed to its tipping game, lofting the ball over the Culver blockers.
   "When they started tipping, we just didn't adjust," Thompson said. "We gave up probably 20 points because we didn't have the tip coverage we needed."
   Culver did rally in the fourth game, coming back from a 16-8 deficit. Lofting had two aces to bring the Bulldogs within 19-15 before Scio closed out the match.
   Lofting finished with two aces, four kills and three digs. Altig and Ruiz added three kills each while Stefanie Hamlin had nine digs.
   Salem Academy 3, Culver 1: The visiting Bulldogs split the opening two games in the 25-18, 17-25, 25-17, 25-11 loss.
   Megan Hamlin led the Bulldog offense with four aces and 11 assists.