Green Dragons Slay Red Devils
October 25, 2010Graham High School
By Mike Duprez
Published: Saturday, October 23, 2010 at 7:53 p.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, October 23, 2010 at 7:53 p.m.
TYRO | Sometimes a team's record can be deceiving.
West Davidson had to rally in all three games before dispatching pesky Graham 25-17, 25-20, 25-21 in the first round of the 2-A volleyball state playoffs on Saturday in Tyro.
Graham, the No. 4 seed from the Mid-State Conference, brought an 8-14 in the match. But the Red Devils brought some game, too, and did no play like a typical fourth seed.
"No, absolutely not," said West coach Gretchan Sheffield. "We knew that going into it. They were a good team. Just like I told the girls, it doesn't get any easier from here on out.".
The Red Devils acted and felt like they were up to the task.
"Our girls have worked really, really hard," said Graham coach Leslie Morris. "We had a stacked conference, so fourth place was really like second place. They want it. They're a scrappy team."
West, 21-7, will host East Lincoln in a second round match on Tuesday.
The Green Dragons won it at the net in their usual fashion with the usual people. Danielle Cox had 18 kills and six blocks while Mo Yarboro had nine kills and 15 assists. Chloe Newsome had five blocks and Rachel Hamrick added 12 assists.
West used long runs of points to recover from deficits, which was both good and bad Sheffield saw it.
"We have a habit of letting a team go on a run and then we go on a run," Sheffield said. "Once we get going, it's hard to stop. Instead of having moments, I want us to look good the whole time."
The Dragons trailed 17-16 in the first game when they went on a 9-0 run the rest of the way. Samantha Rickard got the clinching point on a block.
West took an early lead and seemed to have control when it was 14-10. But the Red Devils went on a 7-1 tear to go ahead. Kathy Barton had two kills and two blocks during the run. The Dragons also had trouble handling the jump serves of Jessie Osborn.
"She did an excellent job tonight," Sheffield said. "She's got a lot of heart and gives a hundred percent out there."
The Dragons still trailed 20-19 when Tori Eller's serve sailed beyond the back line. But just as in the first game, the Dragons went on a run the rest of the way. Consecutive kills by Cox closed it out.
West's power was a recurring theme. If Cox and Yarboro got good sets, they got kills most of the time.
"They're hard to stop," Morris said. "Other than that, our girls played good."
Graham raced to a 12-4 lead in the third game but the Dragons responded with a 9-0 run punctuated by four Eller aces.
The Red Devils took one more lead at 17-16 on an Osborn kill. But Cox tied it with a kill and then served back-to-back aces.
West surged to a 22-18 lead only to see Graham score the next three points to get back within one. A Yarboro kill, Newsome block and Maggie Hughes kill concluded the match.