Warriors edge Yerington in tight match
By Paul Andrew
ZEPHYR COVE – The Whittell High volleyball team knew it had a tough test when the visiting Yerington Lions invaded their Zephyr Cove gym Wednesday evening. The 3A Lions didn’t disappoint, as they fought tooth and nail in every game, only to see Whittell prevail 25-22, 25-35, 23-25, 25-18.
Yerington, ranked No. 2 in the Northern Nevada by the Sierra Nevada Media Group, just behind the top ranked Warriors, started the first game matching the Warriors point for point. Senior Kelly Karmann took control at the net with several smashing kills to give the Warriors a 20-16 lead. The Lions fought back to pull within a point before Brittany Makara served the final two points to give Whittell the tight victory.
“We knew they would be tough,” said coach Dan McLaughlin of the Lions, who came into the match with a perfect 10-0 record. “They’ve beaten some of the top 4A teams such as Douglas, Bishop Manogue and Carson, as well as defending 3A champion Lowry.”
The second game included many lead changes as well before freshman Lauren Andrew scored four straight service points to give Whittell a 16-12 margin. Again, Yerington fought back behind star sophomore’s Kayla Lommori’s devastating net play to tie the game at 22. Nevada 2A player of the year Jessica Woods timely dink closed out the game, giving the Warriors the two-point win.
In game three, Whittell seemed to be cruising as they took what appeared to be a commanding 23-17 lead behind the strong serving of setter Jordan Reeder. The Lions wouldn’t quit as they reeled off eight straight points to win the game and swing the momentum in their favor.
“After giving up the lead and losing that (game), I told the my team that they were the best, and they needed to act like it,” said McLaughlin. “They need to be able to trust themselves in that situation.”
The fourth game saw the Warriors take command as both Karmann and “J-Woods” showed their senior leadership, helping the Warriors jump out to a 21-10 lead. Once again, the resilient Lions came back with six straight points to tighten the match before Karmann finished off the match with several aces.
“I heard they were very good, and would be a big challenge,” Karmann said. “That was one of the toughest matches I’ve had in high school.”
Woods led the Warriors with 19 kills, and 16 service points, with Karmann contributing 18 kills and 15 service points. Reeder had a stellar match at setter with 35 assists and several key blocks.
For the Warriors, (2-0), they escaped the evening knowing they can overcome adversity, and hold off the best that Northern Nevada has to offer. The Warriors participate in the High Sierra Tournament in Reno this weekend, then participate in the prestigious Durango Tournament in Las Vegas the following weekend.
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