Unfortunately for the Warriors, they didn't win enough of the big points to claim a victory.
Kennedy trimmed Washington, 29-27, 16-25, 25-20, 25-23, by making a series of clutch plays in the first and fourth games.
It may have been a question of confidence and experience.
The Cougars reached the semifinals of the Class 4A state tournament in 2009, 2010 and 2011. The Warriors, on the other hand, have not played in the state tournament since 1994, before any of the girls on this year's team were born.
Kennedy has been there and done that. Washington is still trying, but Coach Kari Lombardi thinks her club is making progress.
"I think this year's team is better than they think they are," she said. "They have to believe they can do it. They're going to get there."
The Warriors led 24-22, 24-23, 26-25 and 27-26 in the first game, needing just one point on each occasion to take a 1-0 lead, but the Cougars had the answer each time and won the opener 29-27 on a block by 6-foot-1 Jordan Calef at the net.
The fourth and final game was tight as well. It was tied 15-15, 17-17 and 19-19 before Kennedy prevailed 25-23 on a kill by Lexi Rogers, one of 19 kills for the 6-foot senior.
"She's a great player," said Lombardi.
However, the Warriors hurt themselves with some errant serves and other miscues at the worst possible times.
"It's hard to overcome them (the Cougars) and yourself," said Lombardi. "It's the little things we have to fix."
Kennedy needed five games to dispose of Xavier last week. And just like Washington's performance Tuesday night, the Saints hurt themselves at inopportune times in that contest.
It appears the gap may be closing between Kennedy and other teams in the Metro, at least at this point in the season as the Cougars replace key parts from 2011.
"There is more parity," said Kennedy Coach Michelle Goodall. "I think there's a lot of great athletes in our city."
Rogers thinks the Cougars play their best volleyball when their energy level is high. When their energy dips, she said, so does their performance.
However, Rogers does not think the gap has necessarily shrunk between Kennedy and other Metro clubs.
"We've had a slow start this season and it kind of looks that way," she said. "But at the end of the season we'll play to our potential."
Kennedy raised its records to 10-7 overall and 2-2 in the conference. Washington fell to 8-5 overall and 1-3 in the MVC.
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