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Peebles rolls by West Union in straight sets

West Union’s Houston Adkins, left, battles at the net with Peebles’ Madison Pierce during action from last week’s match at West Union High School.
West Union’s Houston Adkins, left, battles at the net with Peebles’ Madison Pierce during action from last week’s match at West Union High School.

Lady Dragons bounce back to win next night over Fairfield –

Story and photos by Mark Carpenter –

Looking to break a losing streak, the Peebles Lady Indians varsity volleyball team traveled south  down Rte. 41 on Sept. 22 to face the West Union Lady Dragons in Southern Hills Athletic Conference action.  West Union was on a two-match winning streak, but on Thursday night, it was all Peebles as the visitors took care of business in three sets, picking up their fourth win of 2016.
The first set of the match was a tight one, coming right down to the wire.  West Union led 21-20 late, before a service ace by Peebles’ Brittany Lloyd tied the score.  A Jaycee Baldwin kill put the Lady Dragons back in front, but back-to-back kills by Madison Pierce gave the Lady Indians a one-point advantage.  Back and forth they went as the next two points went to West Union, putting them just one point away from taking the set, up 24-23.  Undaunted, the Peebles girls reeled off the next three points and captured the first set 26-24.
With senior Brittany Caldwell at the service line, the Lady Dragons jumped out to a 7-2 advantage in the second set, before Peebles rallied right back with Lloyd grabbing four service points of her own to tie the set at 7 a piece.  A Baldwin kill and later ace put West Union in front 11-8, but again Peebles fought back, using the serves of freshman Tatum Arey to forge an 11-11 deadlock.
Down 12-11, the Lady Indians sent Baylee Justice to the service line and the Peebles junior promptly turned a one-point-deficit into a seven-point lead with eight straight points.   West Union bounced back with a Kendall Gallowitz kill  but could never get control of the set back from their guests.

With a trio of service points from Mckenzie Bickett, the Lady Dragons got back to within 23-20 and forced a timeout by Peebles head coach Katrina Obenshain.  Whatever she told her squad worked as a kill by Madison Pierce helped the Lady Indians wrap up the set 25-20 ad take a commanding two sets to none lead in the match.

Peebles’ Jessica Johnson, center, goes high for a kill attempt during action from the Lady Indians’ three-set win at West Union last Thursday night.
Peebles’ Jessica Johnson, center, goes high for a kill attempt during action from the Lady Indians’ three-set win at West Union last Thursday night.

The third set was another back and forth affair with neither team able to pull away early.  A pair of Kiersten Rowe serves gave West Union the early lead, but a kill by Peebles freshman Christian Reed gave the Lady Indians a 7-5 advantage.  Back came the Lady Dragons to tie the set at 7, but that quickly changed when Peebles got the side out and Reed stepped up to serve and fired off five straight to put her team on top 12-7 and force a West Union timeout.
With Peebles up 13-9, things went from bad to worse for West Union as five service points from Pierce gave the Lady Indians control of the set and an 18-9 lead.  Peebles continued to march toward winning the set and the match, getting a Justice ace to go up 20-11.  The evening came to a close with Lloyd back at the service line as her three points aided by a set-clinching Pierce kill  made it 25-13 and gave the Lady Indians the match in straight sets.
The win improved the Lady Indians to 4-8 on the season and dropped West Union to 3-11.  Peebles also won a preceding eighth grade match in two sets 25-8, 25-8.
With little time to dwell on the Peebles loss, the Lady Dragons were right back in action the following night and right back in SHAC play as they hosted the Fairfield Lady Lions.   West Union made it three wins in four matches for the week as they topped the Lady Lions in four sets, 25-20, 25-20, 23-25, and 25-12.
“This may have been the best all around match we have played all season,” said West Union head coach Debbie McClanahan.  “Everyone did their part and our serving was right on target and we stayed right in there on all of the long volleys.”
On the stat sheet, Jaycee Baldwin led the way for West Union with 10 kills while Houston Adkins added 4 blocks.  Kendall Gallowitz served 5 aces, with Baldwin adding 4 and Bickett 3.

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