WEISER — While the Weiser volleyball team gave it everything they had, they couldn’t match the firepower of visiting Fruitland on Thursday night as the Grizzlies took a 3-0 (25-19, 25-21, 25-9) win over the Wolverines.

Fruitland coach Rena Sitz said the Grizzlies struggled to get into their rhythm in the first two sets as the Weiser defense was firing on all cylinders early.

“We’re such an offensive team now, so our goal is to match our defensive play to our offensive,” Sitz said. “We need to get more used to the scrappy defensive teams. Like Weiser, they’re a very good defensive team.”

But when the Fruitland offense got rolling, it was hard to stop.

Kate Hardy led the Grizzlies with 19 kills and nine digs. Sage McDaniel had seven kills.

Ava Dressen had six kills and Ellie Baker had five.

Madison Scott had 13 digs and Myah Gibb had 12. Chanlar O’Neil had 34 assists and 12 digs.

Fruitland has spent a large portion of this season working to find the perfect lineup this fall. The Grizzlies, who Sitz has dubbed “The Dream Team,” have been working with finding space for three freshmen on the roster as well as a couple of injuries to key players. Senior outside hitter Lilly Richins is out for the season with a knee injury and senior defensive specialist/setter Josey Wilson was out on Thursday with a wrist injury.

But Sitz said she thinks she has found the lineup that the Grizzlies will find the most success with this year.

“Up until Baker, we tried a few different lineups,” Sitz said. “But in that game we decided that this is the right one. And it allows us to get some freshmen in there, which will be important for the future. It’s working so far. I think we’re close to being back to where we were this summer.”

After a disappointing 3-0 loss to Homedale on Tuesday, Weiser coach Lindsay Grant said the Wolverines new they needed to show some more fire against the Grizzlies on senior night.

“We talked a lot about coming into this game with intensity and fighting until the end,” Grant said. “And I thought they did that tonight.”

Reagan Doty had eight ills and five blocks for the Wolverines. Grace Soulen had nine digs and five kills while Macey Buescher had 10 digs and four aces.

“We were just executing the game plan,” Grant said. “Everyone was just doing their jobs and taking care of business.”

The Wolverines will close the regular season at Parma on Tuesday. The Grizzlies will host Payette on Tuesday.

Nik Streng is the sports reporter for the Argus Observer. He graduated from the University of Oregon in 2015 with a master's degree in journalism, after graduating from Pacific University in 2013 with a degree in creative writing.

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