Lady Cyclones leave heart on floor in five-set loss to East

Published 3:01 pm Wednesday, September 14, 2022

STAR CORRESPONDENT
The Elizabethton Lady Cyclone volleyball team has grown by leaps and bounds and that was exhibited on the floor against Sullivan East as the Lady Cyclones responded to a pre second set, fire-lighting discussion from assistant coach Patrick Roberts that awoke an inner beast that had the Lady Patriots on the ropes in the conference showdown.
After dropping the first set, 25-11, Elizabethton dug down deep and came to the floor a different team as communication and all-around play elevated up three levels as the Lady Cyclones took set two (25-21) and three (27-25) before the Lady Patriots responded to even the match at two sets each in the fourth (28-26) before taking the final set by a 15-12 edge to take the match.
Out of the gates, the Lady Cyclones were lethargic with very little chatter going on that saw the Lady Patriots take advantage of the sluggishness displayed by the home team.
However, that all changed in the set due to Robert’s speech which challenged the Lady Cyclones to open up the communication lines and play with a sense of urgency wanting to win the match.
In sets two through four, there was an outstanding display put on from both teams as bodies were flying all over the court with near impossible shots being returned to both sides of the net.
The Lady Cyclones were looking at match point three times in the fourth set before the Lady Patriots managed to just barely squeeze out the set to extend the match to the fifth and final set.
With the fifth set being played to only 15, both teams rolled up their sleeves and went to work wanting to pull out the heart-pounding match. East managed to just slip past the Lady Cyclones down the stretch to pull out the win.
The match took two hours and 25 minutes to complete.
Gracie Kirsch led the charge for the Lady Cyclones with 19 kills, two serving aces, 21 defensive digs, and one block. Krislyn Elliott also had a rock solid night as she pounded down 12 kills to go along with two serving aces, two blocks, and 12 defensive digs.
Ainsley Wampler and Karie Merritt added six kills apiece as Wampler finished with one ace on serve, and 11 defensive digs while Merritt finished her evening with four digs and one block.
Senior Jayci Bowers sent five kills to the East side, added 44 set assists, one serving ace, and 20 defensive digs. Bailee VanHuss completed the match with one kill, one serving ace, and  23 defensive digs.
Others contributing were Zyleigh Bates with 22 digs, Marley Lewis 22 digs, and Zoe Proffitt with four digs and two blocks.
The Lady Cyclones currently stand at 6-10-0 overall as the district tournament approaches.

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