Silverdale Baptist Academy’s volleyball team served up a four-set victory over District 5-A rival Chattanooga Schools for the Arts and Sciences on Tuesday.
The Lady Seahawks got a combined 17 service aces from Molly Rumfelt and Caroline Couch and posted a 3-1 win over the Lady Patriots at Silverdale. The set scores were 25-15, 25-18, 22-25, 25-11.
Rumfelt, the only senior on the SBA squad, recorded nine aces and Couch was credited with eight.
After the Lady Patriots extended the match by winning the third set, Couch’s outstanding streak of left-handed serves helped produce an 8-0 lead and the Lady Seahawks cruised home for the win.
“It’s important to stay confident when you’re serving,” Couch said. “I felt like we would push through and win easy in the fourth set after the fast start.”
Silverdale (7-3, 2-1) was up 19-9 following one of six kills by Elise Pearson and two Lauren Gray service points. Gray netted her next serve, but freshman Kayleigh Page’s tap went off Arica Montgomery’s hand and out on the sideline, Couch came back with two more service points, lasers at shoe-top level that twice handcuffed the Lady Patriots’ Shania Hampton, and the Lady Seahawks built a 22-10 advantage.
CSAS’s Keturah Billen scored on a tap at the net, but Silverdale ran off the final three points to clinch the match.
“Our serving was good in stretches,” Silverdale coach Nathan Daugherty said. “We’re struggling and have been all season with a service error problem. We give up too many points that way, but we made improvement tonight over our last match and we got a lot of aces, too.”
Among 95 Lady Seahawks serves, they recorded 28 aces and had 13 errors.
In addition to Rumfelt and Couch’s performance, Page had five aces and Lauren Gray added four.
“Their serves were pretty stout,” CSAS coach Samantha Everett said. “They’ve got that top-spin and it shoots down. We have to work on creeping in and popping that ball up. We were getting to them a little late and that’s why we had to dive a lot of the time.
“We’ve seen them twice now and once we come back around to them we’ll be ready for that top-spin serve.”
On Tuesday, however, it was Silverdale’s most effective weapon.
The Lady Seahawks built an early 9-3 lead in the first set on Page’s service point had doubled the score on CSAS at 14-7 on an Emma Dale kill. The Lady Patriots couldn’t handle a Rumfelt serve and Silverdale went up 20-11.
Pearson’s soft-touch winner capped a 7-1 Silverdale run that produced a 24-12 lead. Dale netted a return shot that cut CSAS’s deficit to 24-15, but her shot moments later gave the Lady Seahawks a 10-point win.
CSAS (4-17, 2-2) got the early lead in the second set and was up 14-9 on Alex Hollis’ kill.
The Lady Seahawks went on a 14-1 run that resulted in a 23-15 lead – five of those points came while Page was serving. Rumfelt got the final two points, enabling Silverdale to go up two sets to none.
“We got the lead in the second set, but we’ve got to learn to keep a lead,” Everett said. “We got the lead in the third set and just ran with it.”
That set was tied 3-3 and CSAS scored 12 of the next 14 points – eight points resulted in Silverdale misplays and a player being out of position on a Lad Patriots serve – to jump ahead 15-5.
Pearson’s kill sliced the CSAS lead to 18-14, but later three misfires from Silverdale gave the visitors a 24-16 lead. The Lady Seahawks scored six straight points to pull within 24-22.
Billen’s smash at the net nailed down the set for CSAS.
That set up the fourth set and Silverdale wasn’t about that one slip away.
“We expected to win tonight like we do every night,” Daugherty said. “There’s room to improve, but we’re proud of the way we played, way we rallied, way we fought and worked together as a team.”
Said Everett: “The girls were down (mentally) at 8-0 in the fourth set. We have to develop a thick skin and pick ourselves up when we get behind.
“We lost seven seniors off last year’s team, so basically everybody on the court is new. We have to learn to rally back, play together as a team. Games like set three I’ll take all day. If we can build on that game it’s going to be a heck of a season. We have a lot of room to grow, but I think eventually we’ll get there.”
Caroline Couch – 6 digs, 17 assists, 8 aces
Falyn Blalock – 4 digs, 3 assists, 1 ace
Molly Rumfelt – 7 kills, 3 digs, 9 aces
Lauren Gray – 8 digs, 2 kills, 4 aces
Jordan Cooper – 3 kills, 1 assist
Elise Pearson – 2 digs, 6 kills, 1 ace
Kayleigh Page – 2 digs, 6 kills, 1 assist, 5 aces
Note: Stats were not available for CSAS
(E-mail Larry Fleming at email@example.com and follow him on Twitter @larryfleming44)