Local Sports

November 1, 2013

Young Lady Cards fall in finals

Whitley County wins first region title with 3-1 victory over South Laurel

LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. — MCKEE—The team that wasn’t supposed to be here proved the belonged. South Laurel, with just one senior in the lineup, fell in four competitive sets to Whitley County in the 13th Region  finals (25-18, 25-20, 19-25, 25-18).

“We knew this was going to be a rebuilding year and nobody, us included in the beginning with our record, thought we would be where we are right now,” South Laurel coach Mitzi Jones said.

The Lady Colonels 32 wins this season were more than twice as many as South Laurel. Whitley County had as many wins on September 17 as the Lady Cardinals would have when their season ended Tuesday.

“They did belong here and I’m very proud of them,” Jones said.

South Laurel led much of the first set, including the first four points behind the net play of Savannah Baxter and Katelyn Spicer. If the Lady Cardinals were affected by the magnitude of the game or by a crowd unusually loud for volleyball it did not show.

“I knew the crowd would mess with them a little bit. We talked about it on the bus that mental toughness is what would win this game,” Jones said.

Whitley County recovered to tie the game at 5-5. South Laurel would score the next four points to regain momentum. The Lady Cardinals continued to turn back Whitley County rallies as they held a 17-13 lead. A couple of misplayed balls allowed Whitley County to tie the game. The Lady Colonels ended the set on a 12-1 run with five of the points coming on kills that South Laurel hit out of bounds.

“We told them there was no pressure. We knew we would make errors. That’s part of it,” Jones said.

Whitley County led almost the entire second set, but could not put the Lady Cardinals away. When Spicer made a block and later followed it with a kill the score was tied 13-13.

The Lady Colonels pushed the lead back to five points with a couple of close calls. A kill by Whitley County’s Taylor Dingess hit on the line. A high return by the Lady Colonels fell just across the net where neither team could make a play, but it fell on the South Laurel side.

South Laurel was within 21-20 when the Lady Colonels again closed the set strong, beginning with a block by Becky Miller. South Laurel was called for touching the net and a kill landed in the net. The final return sailed out of bounds to give Whitley County a 2-0 lead. Jones said she knew her team wasn’t done yet.

“I saw it in their eyes. They weren’t ready to quit,” Jones said.

The Lady Cardinals broke away from a 10-10 tie with five straight points beginning with a kill by Baxter. Katie Reynolds followed with a block and a kill. Whitley County helped the cause with a net call and a kill into the net.

After a Whitley County point, the Lady Cardinals scored the next four with Baxter serving a pair of aces. Whitley County would get as close as 20-17 before South Laurel closed out the match.

“They battled. They didn’t give up,” Jones said.

There were three ties in the fourth  set with the last coming at 11-11. Whitley County took the lead 12-11 on a tip by Caylin Louthan despite South Laurel players diving desperately to make saves. The Lady Colonels would lead the rest of the match.

South Laurel was still within three points at 20-17 when Dingess scored on a kill. Briana Maynes followed with an ace, which she did often at the serve.

“She jump serves and for some reason even if it’s not harder than other serves I think it catches them off guard a little bit,” Jones said.

Chelsea Bozeman’s kill pushed the Whitley County lead to 23-17, but South Laurel still was not done. Even on the final point the Lady Cardinals were blocking at the net and making all-out dives on the floor.

As Whitley County celebrated the final point, the tears started on the South Laurel sideline for the end of a season that lasted longer than expected.

 “I know they are upset, but they have nothing to be upset about,” Jones said.

And the coach immediately started thinking about next year.

“We’re not there yet. We’ve still got a lot of growth,” Jones said. “I’m very excited about starting the season next year. I know this season is just over, but I’m very excited about the future.”

Text Only
Local Sports
AP Video
Netanyahu Vows to Destroy Hamas Tunnels Obama Slams Republicans Over Lawsuit House Leaders Trade Blame for Inaction Malaysian PM: Stop Fighting in Ukraine Cantor Warns of Instability, Terror in Farewell Ravens' Ray Rice: 'I Made a Huge Mistake' Florida Panther Rebound Upsets Ranchers Small Plane Crash in San Diego Parking Lot Busy Franco's Not Afraid of Overexposure Fighting Blocks Access to Ukraine Crash Site Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida Workers Dig for Survivors After India Landslide Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN
Hyperlocal Search
Premier Guide
Find a business

Walking Fingers
Maps, Menus, Store hours, Coupons, and more...
Premier Guide

Now that school is out, what are your family’s summer vacation plans?

A. No major plans. We will probably hang out around Laurel County.
B. Going to the beach!
C. Kentucky has a lot of wonderful state parks, and we plan to visit a few and enjoy quality family time.
     View Results