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home : sports & recreation : sports & recreation November 21, 2017


10/17/2017 1:30:00 PM
Volleyball team snags nail-biter win over Sweet Home
The Outlaws have been tested on the hardwood, but remain undefeated in league play. photo by Jerry Baldock
+ click to enlarge
The Outlaws have been tested on the hardwood, but remain undefeated in league play. photo by Jerry Baldock

By Rongi Yost
Correspondent

The Lady Outlaws volleyball squad squeaked by in a five-set win at Sweet Home (SH) on Tuesday, October 10, and two days later recorded a three-set sweep at home over Elmira.

Sisters is still undefeated in league, with a 9-0 record.

Tuesday's match against the Huskies seemed like a repeat of Sisters' first match against them the first half of the season, where the Outlaws were down 0-2, and battled back to win the next three for the victory.

Sweet Home had their stands packed with students and fans who kept the volume very loud. SH came out strong with an intense desire to hand the Outlaws their first league loss.

Sisters started off slow and sluggish, unable to find a rhythm on offense, and committed 10 hitting errors. SH was strong at the net and the Outlaws found it difficult to hit around their block. The Outlaws lost the first set 20-25.

The second set started much the same as the first. The Outlaws struggled with the noise level, and played flat and without any chemistry on the floor. Sisters turned it around and actually took a 14-10 lead, but then the Huskies' server tied the game 14-14. Sisters went down 17-22, and committed three errors, which closed out the set in a 19-25 loss. They also had five serving errors in the set, which never let them gain momentum.

In the third set, Sisters was tied 18-18 in a pivotal game three. Sisters moved to a 21-19 advantage, and then Sam Silva stepped up to the service line. Silva pushed the Outlaws to a 24-20 lead, but missed her game-point serve to put the game away. Sisters held off the Huskies and posted a 25-20 win to force game four.

Down 2-1, the Outlaws needed to capitalize on the momentum from the previous set. With Sisters up 9-8, freshman Ellie Rush stepped back and served the next seven points, which gave the Outlaws a 16-8 advantage. SH never got closer than six points after that crucial serving run, and Sisters got the win 25-16.

In the fifth and final set, Rush started at the service line and gave the Outlaws a 4-0 lead. The Huskies were on their heels, and committed three hitting errors in the first four points. The Outlaws eventually found themselves up 10-4, and then SH player Shelby Nichol brought the game to within two at 10-8. The next several servers saw both teams trading side-out points. Sisters pushed to match point at 14-12, but SH got the kill and made it 14-13, and they got the serve. Their chance to push the game into extra points was taken away on a final kill by Hawley Harrer. The Outlaws tallied the 15-13 win to remain undefeated in league.

Harrer led the squad with 25 kills, three blocks, and eight assists. Ashlynn Cantwell posted 12 kills and two blocks, and Sam Silva added seven kills and a block. Erynn Ricker was a force at the net and finished with 11 blocks and four kills, followed by Sophie Silva who added six blocks.

Coach Rory Rush said, "In the fifth set, we once again saw the calm, yet competitive nature of our senior leaders. Jessie (Brigham, the Outlaws libero), was once again a steady, rock-solid presence in the back."

Two days later, the Outlaws celebrated their very talented seniors prior to their match against Elmira. Seniors included Jessie Brigham, Ashlynn Cantwell, Hawley Harrer, Cassidy Ling-Scott and Erynn Ricker.

"This senior class never lost a league game, and has already won two state titles," said Coach Rush. "Tonight they played their last regular season home game. As tradition, the seniors started and played all the way around. They all came ready to play tonight. They wanted to make a statement to the younger players sitting on the bench. Work hard, play hard, and always play as a team; and tonight they did just that!"

The seniors played together for two-and-a-half sets, until they passed the torch in the third set, with the score 20-12, and left the court with a standing ovation.

Sisters easily defeated the Falcons with scores of 25-6, 25-7, and 25-12, and tallied 19 aces as a team.

Harrer had nine kills in the match, followed by Cantwell who had eight, and Jessie Brigham and Erynn Ricker who had seven each. Harrer dished out 15 assists, and Cassidy Ling-Scott recorded 11. Harrer also recorded four blocks in the match.

"It was a great night to honor our seniors, and they once again came ready to play," said Rush. "They were in command of the games from the beginning."

The Outlaws were to wrap up league play with a match at Junction City on Monday, October 16.







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