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VOLLEYBALL — Rebels fall in season opener

West Lincoln’s Victoria Baker serves against Cherryville on Tuesday.

West Lincoln’s Victoria Baker serves against Cherryville on Tuesday.

RYAN HERMAN
Sports Editor

VALE –– Nerves may have done West Lincoln in, but the Rebels showed signs of promise.
Erin Huff had seven kills, Marlee Boston had five aces and Raeven McCrodden added 18 productive passes but they weren’t enough as Cherryville swept the non-conference volleyball contest 3-0 on Tuesday to spoil West Lincoln’s season opener.
The Lady Ironmen (2-0) had already swept Lincolnton in their season opener on Monday, and ran their consecutive sets won streak to six after rallying from a 9-0 hole in the third set.
Cherryville won Set 1 25-19, Set 2 25-20, and Set 3 26-24, and a lack of confidence may have had something to do with extending the match.
“I think we had a lot of jitters,” Rebels coach Tammy Leatherman said.
Six net infractions did West Lincoln in in the opening set, and it trailed the entire second set as Cherryville went up 2-0.
The Rebels (0-1) bounced back in the third set, taking a 9-0 lead to force the Lady Ironmen to use a timeout.
Cherryville closed the gap, but a kill by Huff made it 19-13 before the Rebels gave the point right back on an error.
Cherryville’s Courtney Hay pulled her team within four at 19-15 with a kill, but Huff answered with a kill and an ace on the serve to take a commanding 21-15 lead.
That lead was extended to 24-18 on a kill by Heather Truesdale, and West Lincoln was one point away from forcing a fourth set. But the Lady Ironmen answered by scoring eight unanswered points, two on West Lincoln errors, for the win.
“Our worst thing was we just didn’t cover well enough,” Leatherman said. “They didn’t move the way they’re supposed to.”
The match was the third in as many days for West Lincoln, which travels to North Lincoln today before opening Southern District 7 Athletic 2A Conference play on Thursday at Maiden.
Leatherman said she saw some players give a good effort and her team didn’t quit, despite being down 2 sets to 0.
“Overall I think we did well,” she said. “It gives us something to build off of.”

Image courtesy of Jaclyn Anthony / Lincoln Times-News

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