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Opposing the No. 1 rival on Senior Night provided ample motivation for the Wilson Christian Academy varsity volleyball team in its rematch with Friendship Christian of Raleigh on Tuesday night.
The Lady Chargers’ senior quartet of Lauren Parker, Jenna Hunter, Sydney Norville and Haley Parker was treated to a 25-10, 25-15, 25-14 North Carolina Christian School Association 2-A East Region victory that all but clinched the No. 2 region spot in the postseason.
“We got good play from all four seniors,” commented WCA head coach Ryan Vanderboegh as his team climbed to 6-1 in the region and 14-5 overall. The Lady Falcons, swept by WCA in the first meeting, departed 2-6 and 4-10, respectively.
However, a letdown from the Lady Chargers was not a concern as junior libero Reagan Lamm noted: “They are our biggest rival and they’re a good team.”
But the tone was set when Friendship defenders barely touched Lamm’s three match-opening serves that sailed for aces. Lamm served for four of her match-high seven aces in sending the Lady Chargers to a 6-0 start.
“I was happy but I was surprised,” Lamm admitted of her scorching start. “But it made the game more exciting.”
The Lady Chargers junior wound up with 17 service points.
“It was good,” Lamm assessed her serving. “I was a little nervous at first, but I got on my roll.”
Junior Christy Jones served for 11 consecutive points as WCA’s margin climbed to 18-3. Sophomore Tori Linkous’ ace ended the first set.
The Lady Falcons, behind the serve-receiving and digging of senior Ashlyn Moran and the net play of senior Kane Jensen, were at their best in the second set, managing a 6-4 lead. WCA led for the first time at 7-6 on Norville’s kill and seized the lead for keeps on sophomore Ashley Hartsfield’s ace en route to a 13-9 cushion. After six ties, the Lady Chargers constructed advantages of 17-9 and 20-12.
WCA zipped to a 5-1 edge in the third set. The advantage climbed to 12-6 and then to 18-7 as Lamm served for six consecutive points. Junior McKenna Griffin’s kill staked the Lady Chargers to a 24-13 margin before a Friendship service error ended the match.
Vanderboegh was pleased with his team’s ability to rebound from a four-match grind and weird playing times in Pensacola, Florida, last weekend.
“I knew right away we were a different team,” he noted after the 70-minute match. “We had way more energy and were ready to play. The girls were glad to be home. I figured we would have a pretty good game. It was a different feel. Right away, I thought it might be a quick night — and it was.”
Jones also served for 17 points to go with three assists, two kills and two digs.Haley Parker led with five digs. Hartsfield notched 17 assists, three aces and two digs. Lamm added three digs. Norville posted five kills. Griffin amassed 11 kills, four digs and two blocks. Sophomore Lydia Renfrow asserted her presence in the final set.
“We stuck together, worked hard and didn’t want to lose,” Lamm declared.
WCA ends its regular season with a region test at Hilltop Christian of Fuquay-Varina on Friday.