The Lady Bears played closely with Alleghany most of the volleyball match, but fell 3-0.
The visiting Lady Trojans put together several small runs that propelled them over Mount Airy.
In the first set, the Bears went up 4-1 at the start, but the Trojans ran off six straight points to take the lead 7-4.
The Bears came back to tie it at 8-all and didn’t let Alleghany get more than three points ahead the rest of the way.
Down 14-11, the Bears made two great scramble plays to keep the rally going before finally earning a point, but they couldn’t keep that momentum going.
The Bears were trailing just 21-20 with the serve, but then hit two consecutive serves into the net.
The first gave the Trojans a 22-20 lead, and the other made it 24-21 before the final was 25-22.
Those two serves really hurt, admitted Coach Chuck Morris.
There were too many defensive errors and a handful of bad serves coming at the wrong time, he said.
If someone didn’t look at the runs Alleghany made, then the Bears played well the rest of the time, the coach noted. However, those runs do count and made the difference Wednesday.
“Consistency is what I’m looking for,” he said. Consistency in the course of a set and from one set to another.
After a very close first set, the Bears allowed a 9-0 run to start the second set.
Mount Airy battled well after that up to 15-6, but then a 7-1 spurt put the set out of reach, and the Trojans won 25-10.
The Bears went up 6-4 in the third set. Even in a point they lost, the Bears showed great hustle, making three scramble plays on the same rally.
Then with the Bears up 9-6, the Trojans made a 6-1 run to take the lead.
From 16-15, Alleghany scored three straight points to go up 19-15.
The Bears went on a 5-1 run of their own to draw a timeout from Alleghany. However, the visitors would score the last four points for a 25-20 win.
This team has suffered a lot of two- and three-point losses, said Morris. That points to the low experience level of this young team with only two seniors, he said.
A couple of matches ago, Morris brought up Samantha Kovach from the JV team. At 6-foot-1, Kovach has been a big help on the front line and made five blocks Wednesday.
That has allowed Morris to move Amy Kunkel to outside hitter, giving the front line more height.
When Kovach rotated off the middle, Abby Harold moved into the spot and had a good game, according to the coach. Harold had five kills, five blocks and was a perfect 9/9 at the service line.
Setter Sarah Lankford added four blocks in addition to handing out 30 assists. That puts the freshman at more than 500 for the season.
She split time at setter at the start of the season with Tessa Rodgers, which makes her 7.2 assists per set even more remarkable.
This area has some of the best setters in the state, in the coach’s opinion.
Starmount’s Erin Barr is the best setter around, Morris said, but North Surry’s Bailey Culler, East Surry’s Olivia Sheets and Surry Central’s Kaitlin Kidd are all good, too.
Helping Lankford’s stats is having Kathryn Beasley on the outside. The senior had 16 kills in this match.
When the other team has to game-plan for one player, then that shows how valuable she is, Morris said.
The Bears will honor their two seniors, Beasley and Jasmine Varney, before today’s last home game at about 5:30 p.m. against Atkins.