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The Fike High varsity volleyball team claimed a distinct height advantage without the presence of 6-foot-3 senior Ashleigh Sage.
But for the most part, the Ladybirds simply could not control Sage’s height and Fike capitalized with a 25-17, 25-20, 22-25, 25-19 conquest in the 3-A Big East Conference for both squads in the Fike High gym Tuesday evening.
Sage thundered for 16 kills as the Lady Golden Demons upped their overall record to 6-5. Southern Nash dropped to 7-4.
Defeated by Sage and company in the first two sets, Southern Nash kept its hopes flickering with a 25-22 win in the third game. But the Lady Demons regrouped with a solid fourth set.
“Great team effort tonight,” assessed first-year Fike head coach Brent Secrest. “The defense did a fantastic job with their passes and digs so that the setters could run the offense.”
Sage not only prowled at the net but also helped with the serving.
She was complemented by junior Anna Black with 18 digs, senior Reece Nelson with 21 assists, junior E.J. Secrest with 16 assists, junior Taylor Boykin with five kills and junior Keyley Shackleford with 25 service points.
Fike forged the early lead in the opening set and expanded the cushion to 19-11. The Ladybirds spurted, whittling the deficit to 22-17 before Fike stopped their spree. Sophomore Kendall Harris’ hit finished the set.
The Lady Demons, in the second set, increased an 8-1 start to 20-11 as Shackleford, Caroline Searcy and Boykin produced key points to complement Sage and Nelson.
Southern Nash again rallied, creeping as close as 20-16, then 20-18. The Lady Demons finally put away the set on a kill from Harris and an ace from Black, who was invaluable with serve-receiving and digs.
Greenfield gets first CPIC win
The Greenfield School varsity volleyball team rebounded from a third-set loss Tuesday afternoon to record a 25-14, 25-18, 22-25, 25-17 victory over Greenville Pope John Paul II.
Greenfield, which climbed to 4-5 overall and 1-1 in the split 1-A/2-A Coastal Plain Independents Conference, had double-digit kills from junior Kaelyn Wall and senior Sumer Hassan.
Wall had 16 kills, with Hassan notching 10 kills and 12 aces to go along with 37 digs. Wall was credited with 30 digs and a quintet of aces.
Freshman Lily Hess had 25 digs on defense as double-digit dig efforts were recorded by senior Catherine Alvarez (17) and Jeallen Holland (10).
“Super proud coach today,” Greenfield head coach Jadelyn Castillo observed. “Not just because we won, but because the girls really played as a unit. They lifted each other up in the bad moments and they celebrated as a team, regardless of who scored.”
Pope John Paul fell to 2-4 in all matches, 0-2 in the CPIC.
CCS swept by St. Thomas More
RALEIGH — The Community Christian School varsity volleyball team returned to 1-A/2-A Coastal Independents Conference play Tuesday and dropped a 26-24, 25-16, 25-9 decision to Raleigh St. Thomas More.
Junior Lauren Pate had a double-double of 10 kills and 10 assists for the Lady Cyclones (2-8, 2-6 CIC) and added six service points. Morgan Garner, a senior, had 10 assists and five service points. Eighth grader Abigail Jackson finished with 10 service points, three kills and a pair of aces.
WCA 9-0 after whacking Hilltop
FUQUAY-VARINA — Tori Linkous rained down 14 kills as the Wilson Christian varsity volleyball team won its ninth straight match without a loss by sweeping host Hilltop Christian in three games Tuesday.
The Lady Chargers rose to 3-0 in North Carolina Christian School Association 2-A East Region play with the 25-20, 25-15, 25-11 victory.
Linkous added four service aces and two blocks while senior McKenna Griffin powered nine kills and served two aces. Madison Carnes had five kills while Christy Jones chipped in four digs and a pair of kills. Ashley Hartsfield totaled 27 assists.
The Lady Chargers are off until Friday, Sept. 22, after having a tournament at Bob Jones University in Greenville, South Carolina, canceled this weekend due to Hurricane Florence.
Hunter’s PK gives WCA 1-0 win
FUQUAY-VARINA — A 79th-minute penalty kick off the foot of Zach Hunter found the net for the only goal of the match, giving his Wilson Christian varsity boys soccer team a 1-0 victory over host Hilltop Christian on Tuesday.
The victory was the Chargers’ third straight as they improved to 5-4-2 overall and 2-1-0 in North Carolina Christian School Association 2-A East Region.
Chargers head coach Don Samson said Hunter “took some hard contact” after dribbling into the box and was awarded the P.K. Wilson Christian dominated the shot chart, outshooting its host 22-6 but had two apparent goals negated for offsides calls. Chargers goalkeeper Harrison Parker came up with two saves while Jack Ortiz sparked the defensive effort.
The match was twice delayed by lightning, Samson said.
Record assault continues for Hunt
ROCKY MOUNT — The Hunt High girls golf team turned in a record performance for the third time in the last four matches in widening its 3-A Big East Conference lead in the second of six matches at Northgreen Golf Club on Monday.
The Lady Warriors of coach Jeff Boykin fired a team record 128 for their low three individuals in stretching their lead against runner-up Southern Nash.
The Ladybirds posted a 152, followed by Franklinton at 191 and Fike at 201. Rocky Mount entered two players and Northern Nash was represented by a lone golfer.
Plern Rattanagrakarn, an exchange student from Thailand, paced Hunt with a 1-over-par 37 for the second straight time in playing the front nine at Northgreen. Rattanagrakarn’s round included birdies at Nos. 1 and 7.
Complementing Rattanagrakarn were senior Sarah Bunn with a 41 and freshman Ashton Barnes with a 50.
Other Hunt scores were freshman Allison Boykin with a 53 and Gracie Taylor with a 61.
Southern Nash was again paced by junior Elisabeth Collie, the 2017 Big East Player of the Year, with a 46. Freshman Samantha Puckett came in with a career-low 49, while junior Taylor Hall had a 57.
Fike got a 62 from Alena Robbins, a 69 from Carrie Myrick and a 70 from Mallory O’Brien.
Posting Franklinton’s low round was Sarah Kenney with a 61.
The third Big East match is scheduled for Monday at The River Golf Course, with Southern Nash as the host.