Match Point in Independence’s Regional Final win over Canton Central Catholic

(11-6-17)  #1 Coldwater and #4 Independence will play in an OHSAA Division III State Volleyball semifinal at Wright State on November 10th at 12:00 p.m.

Both teams are ranked in the Top 4, both have only one lost to a state ranked team, Coldwater to New Bremen (D IV) and Independence to St. Jospeh Academy (D I) and both of those schools will also be at Wright State this weekend competing for a State Title. For Coldwater it is their 2nd  trip to state (1994 was the first) and for the Blue Devils it is their first ever trip to the finals.

Both teams have 1st team All State player, Independence has Senior Maura Collins (headed to the University of Dayton) and Coldwater has Senior Tasha Kahlig, on the 2nd team Coldwater has Lauren Gilliland and on the 3rd team Independence has Maddy Bilinovic. Plus the Cavs have the OHSVCA D III Coach of the Year Nikki Etzler.

Two teams that know how to win and both hoping to pick up a state title.

The winner will get the winner of the other semifinal match, which will have #9 Versailles (same conference as Coldwater) and #2 Tuscarawas Valley.

Independence Head Coach Megan Osysko

Thoughts on your team’s tournament run

I am pleased with how my team has played in the State tournament thus far, and we are excited for the opportunity of advancing to the Final Four.

win over Canton Central Catholic

The girls were focused and played hard all the way through the match against CCC!  It is a great next step for the Independence volleyball program to be advancing to the Final Four.

Playing #1 Coldwater

The team is excited for the opportunity to play in the Semi-Finals against Coldwater.  Our goal is to keep the same mentality we have had this season of working hard and keeping the ball off of the floor!


#	Name			Positions	Gr.	Ht
6	Maddy Bilinovic		L		So.	5-5
23	Maura Collins (C) 	RS, S, MB	Sr.	5-6

Coldwater advances to the Final Four after a 3-0 win over #3 and previously undefeated Eastwood.

After the match Eastwood Coach Jeff Beck told the News-Sentinel about his thoughts on Coldwater:

“They read very well they kind of anticipate where the serve is going, they anticipate where the ball is going. They’re low to the ground and they so calm. They don’t over-celebrate, they don’t get on each other in a negative way, they move on to the next play immediately, and they mean business for the next play.”

“They’re great readers of the ball and that was pretty frustrating.”

Coldwater Head Coach Nikki Etzler

Talk about your win over Eastwood

I felt like the girls played more relaxed than they did when we played Marion Pleasant. They were more engaged and were able to focus on their side of the net and how to earn points. They served aggressive and were able to get Pleasant in out-of-system situations that allowed us to take advantage of runs to earn points.

Allison Sudhoff and Lauren Gilliland did an outstanding job offensively for us and put up a very strong block. Elena Knapke did a great job running our offense. Sydney Hartings came in to serve in set 2 and 3 and was able to gain momentum for us that fueled our run of points to 25. The girls were so excited to win and get over the Regional hump that they have been fighting to get over for many years. Our long bus ride home to Coldwater seemed much shorter this year with a win!

prep for the State Semi- Final match…

We will continue to work on our focus on how to improve our side of the net. We will focus on our ball control, serve and serve receive game, as well as our defense. We know from watching film and talking to other coaches about Independence, that they are a very balanced and fundamentally sound team. They play incredible defense and they will make us earn every point as they do not make errors.

Our girls know that this week of practice will entail hard work, accountability, and a high expectation of improving. It will be no different from our regular season of preparation or our tournament run of practice preparation. We will keep our focus on working to improve and be the best team we can be!

Our girls, parents, school, and community are super excited for this opportunity to head down to Wright State Nutter Center and play in the final 4 match.


The Midwest Athletic Conference over the years has won 16 state volleyball championships, this year they have three teams in the Final Four, Coldwater, Versailles and New Bremen.

D III State VB Bracket