The Mount Airy Lady Bears gave the Alleghany Trojans, a 1A division team who is tied for first place with West Wilkes, all the fight they could handle Wednesday night in a balanced shootout match consisting of intense netplay, digs and focused assist plays leading to intense attack plays by both teams.
Finally, the game ended with the Lady Trojans edging by the Bears in a total match tally of 19-25, 23-25 and 20-25.
Many defined this match as the best defensive game that they had witnessed all season long because of the intensity and focus level exhibited during the match. Parents and grandparents of the players commented on their excitement to see the players reach the level of play shown tonight.
Coaches noted that the level of both teams’ youth combined with their intensity of play left each of them hopeful for future prospects of victory. Coaches expressed satisfaction with the unusually high level of discipline displayed tonight by two young teams during excruciating volleys and rallying comebacks.
Trojans Head Coach Debie Weaver and Bears Head Coach Kim Lyons both remarked that they were extremely satisfied with the level of play reached by their players Wednesday.
Game referee, Daron Atkins, described this match as “no doubt the best played defensive match,” that he had seen the entire season. Heavy attacking of the net, long volleys and masterful digs set this match apart from previous ones. Parents and fans alike described the play of the Lady Bears as true teamwork and attributed at least part of the high level of play to focus and excellent communication.
Dana Brown shined in particular for the Lady Bears with a season record of 20 assists and 14 digs, in what Lyons described as very impressive and intensive play. Charli Hiatt was 7-7 in serves and dominated defensively in the libero position, a position she later emphasized as giving her a feeling of “owning the court.”
Taylor Dollyhigh repeatedly stirred up the intensity of play and led with a punishing completion of 18-of-19 serves.
Lyons added in particular that the “dominating net play of Katie Hicks” and the aggression of Jasmine Varney in “keeping the ball alive” was extremely impressive. The 13 assists by the consistent and aggressive Tessa Rodgers and six blocks by Jasmine Varney also contributed to the intense momentum level reached by both teams as well as strategically called timeouts.
Katherine Beasley pounced back at the Trojans recording nine kills and Katie Hicks punched in seven. The rotating relief given by all players in a show of dominating teamwork kept a dominating Lady Trojan team with an 11-6 record very busy indeed. Weaver said that overall she was pleased with the Trojans’ play. Weaver also commended the Lady Bears’ performance.
Next week, the Trojans will play in a tiebreaker match for the number one seed against West Wilkes. Weaver commented that she stayed in expectation each game for her team to improve as part of their winning formula. She said that she was happy with the backline play and the hart hitting of her team overall.
Mount Airy will face South Stokes tonight in another home match.