HELENA — As they have done all season, the Helena Capital Bruins (20-0) showed why they are No. 1 in the state with a dominating win Friday at the Bears Den over the Flathead Braves 25-10, 25-12, 25-14.

“We followed our game plan and played really well together,” said Capital coach Rebecca Cleveland. “Offensively we were solid. Defensively we had some great digging. We were playing disciplined defense. On our serves, we corrected errors quickly and were very consistent and dominant on serves.”

After a Braves (8-13) point tied the first set at 3-all, Capital started pouring it on. The Bruins took off on an 8-1 run before Flathead called timeout in an attempt to stop the bleeding. Out of the timeout, Capital went on another 6-2 run and finished the set on an 8-4 run.

The second and third sets were more of the same. The Bruins stormed out to a 12-2 run and a 15-5 run in the second and third sets, respectively. Before the Braves could gather themselves, they had already fallen into a hole they could not climb out of.

Flathead did close the gap to 19-14 during the third set, but the Bruins finished the game on a 6-0 to polish off another win.

“I feel like the errors were on our side and kind of gave them points,” Cleveland said. “They had a couple blocks, which was good. Our hitters quickly adapted, so that was good to see. As far as our level of play, we just need to continue correcting our errors and stepping up our level of play.”

“When they hit line on us a couple times we had to move our block over,” explained Paige Bartsch. “And that was pretty much it. We just had to work together and keep the high energy.”

Paige and Dani Bartsch were often finishing off rallies. Paige had 11 kills and two blocks while Dani had seven kills and six digs.

“I think our serving was great,” Paige said. “So that really helped us play better. Our passing was on, and just playing together is what helped us win.”

Capital had 30 assists as a team compared to just eight for Flathead. Audrey Hofer had 26 of those assists. Sarah Ashley led the Bruins with eight of the team’s 40 digs. The Braves managed 19 digs. Madi Davis and Mashayla O’Malley had three aces apiece. Davis also led the team in blocks with three.

The Bruins are back at it Saturday hosting Glacier. Game time is 1 p.m.

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Matthew Kiewiet covers high school and community sports for the Independent Record and 406mtsports.com. Email him at matthew.kiewiet@406mtsports.com or follow him on Twitter @IRmattkiewiet.

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