It might have been opening night of the Lafayette Central Catholic volleyball sectional Thursday, but game one was a typical Northfield-Southwood Wabash County slobber knocker.
Although the Norse won in four games 25-15, 22-25, 25-23, 25-19, the out come was in doubt the entire night. Northfield did come out firing on all pistons in game one, jumping out to a 9-2 lead led by Kyra Kennedy and Addi Baker. Northfield would extend their lead to 17-5 with Kelcie Thomson serving during a 5-0 run that was aided by two Haylie Faust kills. The Knights would fight back, getting kills from Kayla Mays and Alissa Pershing to cut the deficit to 24-15 before a ball out of bounds ended game one 25-15.
In typical Southwood fashion the Knights would regroup between games and come out energized in game two. A Makenna Pace ace and a kill from Pershing put Southwood up 3-0 before the Norse came back to tie the score at 4. Pershing and Maggie Ball would then take over at the net, pushing the Knights to a 16-11 lead before the Norse bounced back. Baker and Kennedy would record kills during a 5-0 run to give Northfield a 19-18 lead before Mays stopped the run with a kill that ignited a 4-0 for for Southwood to put the Knights up 22-19. Erin Lehner had two aces during the run with Ball scoring on a tip. Northfield would go back to Baker to trail 23-22 before Mays scored on a tip and the Knights forced an error to take game two 25-22 and even the match 1-1.
Northfield would get the good start in game three with Ally Keaffaber getting things started with a tip for a 4-0 lead. The Norse would continue heavy pressure at the net with Kearston Stout blocking and Faust killing to open a 13-6 lead and held their margin until 23-16 when the Knights made a move. A couple Northfield errors followed by a Pace ace sandwiched between two Pershing tips made it 23-21 before Baker stopped the 5-0 run. Again the Knights would go to Pershing to make it 24-23 before the Norse pulled off game three 25-23.
With their backs against the wall the Knights would come out clicking to start game four. A Mays kill along with a tip from Allison Steele put the Knights up 7-5 before a 4-0 Norse run gave Northfield a 9-7 lead. Erin McGouldrick and Ball would then lead the Knights to a 4-0 run to take the lead back at 11-9 when the Norse caught fire and looked as they they were going to run away from the Knights. A Faust kill got the Norse going as they score 14 of the next 18 points to grab a 23-15 lead. Stout and Kennedy would do most of the damage. The Knights however would not fold. A Pershing kill was followed by a kill from McGouldrick along with a Pershing ace to make it 23-19 before Kennedy stopped the run. The Norse would take game four 25-19 and win the match 3-1.
Ashley Smith: 6 Service Points; 1 Ace; 1 Kill; 17 Assists; 5 Digs
Makenna Pace: 5 Service Points; 1 Ace; 12 Digs
Alissa Pershing: 6 Service Points; 1 Ace; 13 Kills; 3 Blocks; 3 Digs
Reese Shepherd: 6 Service Points; 1 Ace; 1Assist; 20 Digs
Erin Lehner: 4 Service Points; 2 Aces; 5 Kills; 11 Digs
Erin McGouldrick: 3 Kills; 2 Blocks
Marissa Metzger: 7 Kills;
Maggie Ball: 2 Kills; 3 Blocks; 1 Dig
Kayla Mays: 6 Kills; 1 Block; 1 Dig
Allison Steele: 8 Service Points; 3 Aces; 2 Kills; 15 Assists; 6 Digs
CLICK HERE for photos from the match