Dutchtown High had to pull out a come-from-behind, nail biting win in the fourth set to slip by parish rival Ascension Christian 3-1 in volleyball action Tuesday.
Trailing by as many as four points at 17-13, and facing a set point at 25-24, the Griffins fought back to tie the set at 25, go ahead 26-25, and fall into another tie at 26 before a timely kill by Keleigh Poland and a mishandled ball by the Lions gave Dutchtown the 28-26 win.
Dutchtown (12-7) won the first two sets 25-23 and 25-16 before ACHS jumped ahead early and led all the way in the third set, winning 25-15.
The Lions were in control of the fourth set before Dutchtown used a 6-1 run to knot the score at 19, and it was back and forth the rest of the way.
“We’ve come against Dutchtown several times and never quite beat them so I think that was (a factor) in the first game,” Ascension Christian coach Lisa Pellegrin said. “The second game we didn’t win, but we were there with them. The third game the girls eased into their positions and started doing what they know how to do.”
ACHS (9-8) pulled ahead 16-10 in the first set and held an 18-12 lead before the Griffins’ strong front line, led by Poland, Casey Cannon, and freshman Kristen Thompson, took over, leading Dutchtown to a 13-5 run and the first-set victory.
“Everybody on our front row did a good job today, and I thought our setter (Tiyena Brown) did a good job getting the ball to them,” Dutchtown coach Patrick Ricks said. “We just had to weather the storm in the first game and get more consistent.
“Ascension Christian is a solid team, and I’ve been telling my girls that. I’ve seen them grow from when the school started to now, and they really play well together.”
The Lions displayed their defense in the second set. They moved well and dug out a barrage of kills, but in the end the DHS front line wore them down, and the last points of the set came on kills and blocks from Poland, Cannon and Thompson.
“I thought our girls hustled well, played together well, communicated and had focus,” Pellegrin said. “I’m proud of them.”
Poland led Dutchtown with 14 kills, and Cannon added eight. Thompson registered five blocks, and Brown had 30 assists.
Reyna Jones had 10 kills for the Lions. Aleah Sanchez and Allyson Cambre had seven kills apiece, and Cambre had six blocks. Victoria Schexnayder had 23 assists and 10 digs.
Ricks said his team was confident going into the fourth set.
“We changed our lineup a little, and the girls on the floor did a really good job. Overall I thought we could have blocked a little better, and we need to improve on defense,” he said.