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Sunday, October 11, 2009

Panthers in Three Over Arrows

Neighboring Preble Shawnee paid a visit to the home court of Twin Valley South this last week of September. Shawnee has a mixture of players with several sophomores and freshmen on the court this season. There are some seniors on the court, but at times the lack of experience showed. The Panthers seemed to more poised and rallied under pressure. This season, South has a winning record to be sure, but will need to finish strong to equal the records of teams past. This game was a step in that direction. In her post game comments coach Roberts noted that the team is coming together for the last half of the season.

Early in the first match it was TVS that was playing sloppy. And allowed Shawnee a 4 point lead - 14 to 10. Despite a couple of net serves and a lift. South was able to battle back and get the lead 19-17 at which point Shawnee took a time out to stop their momentum. Shawnee responded and were able to tie the game at 24 all. But South was able to pull ahead and finally won 27-25 when the Arrows allowed the ball to drop untouched for the final Panther point.

In the second match, it was Shawnee who got to a slow start. They had a rough time of it due to the strong play of South and some more mental mistakes of their own. They were down 13-6 when the team finally found a gear and started to churn out some points of their own. They outscored South 8-4 and closed the gap. And they would continue to rally and close to 2 points. But in the stretch, the Panthers were able to hold off the Shawnee challenge and win by a comfortable margin 25-21. An injury forced a Shawnee starter to go to the bench, further impeding their cause.

For the first part of the third set the teams played well. Both seemed to be in a groove for this last set. But Shawnee could not get any breaks. There were several good volleys, but when the ball went to the floor – it always seemed to be on the Shawnee side. South got a three point lead and Shawnee took a time out to set things right. However, it just wasn’t Shawnee’s night. South continued to pull away and their blockers, Laura Ingram and Taylor Baker, did a great job of throwing back Shawnee spikes thru out the game, but particularly in this last set. In the last part of the set, Shawnee could not stop the South onslaught allowing South to win 25-13.

“We were pleased to come away with a 3 set win,” stated Coach Roberts after the game, “We were fortunate to win over Shawnee with their much improved defense and they were attacking the ball strong. I would say that tonight we were lead by Laura Ingram and Taylor Baker over the middle. Followed by nice play on the outside by Emily Burge and Katherine Leach. Grace Cottingim had most of the assists and did a nice job of distributing the ball. We are 8-5, but we’ve had an injury - had to regroup and find new chemistry. But from here on we are looking good for the future.”

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