Andy girls split; Straughn wins 2

Published 12:04 am Friday, October 3, 2014

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Andalusia’s Keyasha Comer and Quatasia Wheeler block Thursday night. | Andrew Garner/Sta-News

Andalusia split on its senior night and Straughn won two matches in a Class 4A, Area 2 tri-match with Headland on Thursday night at AHS.

The Lady Tigers beat Andalusia 3-1 (25-20, 20-25, 25-21, 25-22) and Headland 3-0 (25-11, 25-19, 25-13); and the Lady Bulldogs won three straight to top the Lady Rams 3-1 (16-25, 25-15, 25-16, 25-12).

With the split, the Lady Bulldogs improve to 8-8 overall, and 2-1 in area play. Straughn is 15-2, and 4-0 with a perfect view from the driver’s seat in area action.

“I was proud of the girls for coming back and winning three straight sets,” AHS head volleyball coach Angie Grimes said.

Grimes said the girls are seeing the court better.

“They’re starting to play smarter and trying to find the holes,” she said. “I’m really proud for them trying to do that.”

With a dominant game-one start, the Lady Tigers regrouped and scraped their way with the win over AHS, and then cruised over HHS.

These are area wins and SHS head volleyball coach Daniel Rodgers said he’ll take them.

“They’re the ones that matters,” Rodgers said. “I think we got out of here with two of them. We survived the first game. Headland played well the second game, and (the Lady Rams) gritted. It seemed like we were in survival mode in that first game (against Andalusia). I’m proud they overcame it.”

Andalusia got off to a good 3-0 start and led 8-3 in the first set, but squandered the advantage when SHS started attacking the net, getting essential kills. Late in the first, AHS served into some errors and SHS took over.

Strong serving from Andalusia’s Haley Harper mid way through the second game gave the Lady Bulldogs an advantage they’d never give up.

The Lady Bulldogs had a 8-2 lead in the third game, but SHS came storming back to tie it at 9-9.

Straughn senior Katelyn Kinsaul propelled the girls to a 6-0 run on serve, forcing Andalusia to take a timeout. Ashley Hughes then got a good block to put it at 23-18, and got a kill to go to win the third game after the Lady Tigers gave up three game-point opportunities.

SHS led from the start in the fourth game, and never let up.

A big reason for Straughn’s success last night were its younger players stepping up and doing well.

“Hannah Lawless, the ninth grader, she had several kills tonight from that right side,” Rodgers said. “We had some big plays. Ashley Hughes, our tenth grade middle hitter, had some kills and had some big serves. That, in combination with the steadiness of our upper classmen’s leadership; we had to rely on them tonight.”

Alexis Lawrence, a senior, had nine kills; and Harper hit 25 in serves and had eight aces to lead AHS.

Kinsaul led SHS with eight aces and nine assists. Jacie Williamson, senior, had four kills; Lawless, Hughes and Paige Taylor had three kills each. Courtney Rogers added seven digs. Sarah Langford had five aces.

Against Headland, Williamson had six kills and four aces; Langford had five aces; Rogers had eight aces; and Kinsaul had 10 assists to lead the Lady Tigers.

In the Andalusia-Headland match, the Lady Rams came out on the right end of the deal after game one, but the Lady Bulldogs regrouped to take a 20-13 lead in set two to the house as the girls found holes for points.

Andalusia’s Shelby Meeks got two kills in a row in the third game to help give Andy a 17-10 lead.

In set four, Keyasha Comer used her strength on the outside to net seven kills in the match.

Meeks finished with four blocks. Lawrence had five kills.

“I’m glad we finished on a strong note,” Grimes said.

In other volleyball action, Opp beat Hillcrest-Evergreen 3-0.

Andalusia and Straughn will be back in on Thursday for another area tri-match with Ashford at SHS.