Heading into this week’s 12th District Volleyball Tournament, the Lady Cougar team saw lots of action on Saturday as they played six matches at The Volleybrawl, hosted by John Hardin High School.
The Lady Cougars won two of those matches and lost four. In the early-morning match-up against North Bullitt (20-9), the Eagles took a straight-set win, 13-25, 18-25. Against Oldham County (21-15), the Lady Cougars fell again in straight sets, 12-25, 19-25.
Grayson County then picked up a win against the Iroquois Raiders (3-22-1), 25-14, 25-17, before dropping a match against host John Hardin (11-21) in straight sets, 24-26, 15-25.
The Lady Cougars then played the East Jessamine Jaguars (5-20) and came away with their second win on the day, 25-8, 25-6.
In a consolation-bracket game, the Lady Cougars again faced off against John Hardin and dropped a close match, 21-25, 23-25.
The News-Gazette was on hand for three of the Lady Cougar matches and the following are the accounts of those games.
In both sets against the Eagles, the Lady Cougars were close until big North Bullitt runs put the sets out of reach.
Trailing 6-9 in the first set, Amber Dotson took the serve for Grayson County and got the score even at 9-9. A North Bullitt hitting error, and a kill by Jessika Young made it 8-9, before Dotson stuck an ace off the tape to knot the score.
The score stayed close until the Eagles took over the serve leading 11-12, when they reeled off five straight points to take a lead they would not give back, 11-17.
Still leading by six, 12-18, the Eagles scored five straight again to take an insurmountable lead at 12-23.
On set point, 13-24, Grayson County’s Katlynn Bratcher hit one long to give the Eagles the first-set win.
The Lady Cougars were down just a point, 2-3, when another big run gave the Eagles a 10-point lead. Four kills and a pair of aces fueled a 9-0 Eagle run that put them on top 2-12.
The Lady Cougars fought back though, pulling to within two points of the lead, 14-16 following a six-point run that was spearheaded by the serving of Bratcher, who served four straight aces.
But the Eagles responded with a 5-0 run that put them back up by seven, 14-21, and they cruised the rest of the way to take the match.
The first set followed the same pattern of the North Bullitt match, with the Lady Cougars staying close in the early going, only to see a big Oldham County run take them out of it.
The Lady Cougars scored the first four points of the game led by Bratcher’s two aces leading off. But the Lady Colonels answered back with six straight points to gain the lead.
Grayson County came back to tie things at 7-7, but trailed by two, 8-10, when the Colonels took off on a tear. Nine unanswered points gave them an 11-point lead, and the Lady Cougars were never in it the rest of the way.
The second set stayed close until four straight Oldham County points, including two aces by Jenna Grantz, gave the Colonels a five-point lead, 6-11.
Trailing by six, 8-14, Grayson County put together a run of their own to pull to within two at 12-14. Bratcher and Young both had kills during the run, and Dotson served an ace.
A pair of Oldham County hitting errors brought the Lady Cougars to within a point of the lead, 15-16, but they would never be closer.
Oldham County scored the next three points to increase their lead to four at 15-19. The Lady Cougars twice got to within two points, the last time coming at 19-21, but a a kill by Oldham’s Marissa Turnage gave her team the serve at 19-22 and the Colonels served out for the win.
At match-point, Peyton Kidwell recorded a kill off the Grayson County block and they took the match 19-25.
These two teams had been scheduled to play one another on the previous Tuesday, but a power outage caused that game to be cancelled.
Grayson County grabbed an early 4-0 lead against the Bulldogs, and led by seven, 10-3 before John Hardin put together a big run to even the score. Three kills from Ebonie Hampton and an ace off the tape by Grace Garrott led a 5-0 Bulldog run to tie things at 10-10.
The teams stayed within a point or two of one another the rest of the set before the Lady Cougars got the serve trailing by a point, 22-23. Bratcher served an ace to make it 23-23, before the Bulldogs had a four-hit volley on their end to give the Lady Cougars a set-point at 24-23.
But Grayson County lost the serve when a set ball fell untouched to the floor and the Bulldogs took over tied at 24-24. Sydney Conhan then served an ace off the tape to give the Bulldogs a set-point. On the ensuing volley, Bulldog senior Rachel Green put away a kill to give her team the first-set victory.
That loss seemed to take all the air out of the Lady Cougars and the Bulldogs took advantage to race out to a 1-9 lead in the second set.
Five straight Grayson County points, including two aces from senior Jessi Slayton, brought Grayson County to within four points at 7-11. A Dotson ace later brought them to within three at 11-14, but they would get no closer.
Four straight Bulldog points increased their lead to eight at 13-21. The Lady Cougars avoided one match-point, 14-24, on a John Hardin hitting error, but on the ensuing Grayson County serve, Green dinked a ball into an empty area to give her team the straight-set win.