Impressive Signal Mountain Whips Red Bank, 3-0

Eagles Improve To 27-7 With 25-6, 25-7, 25-15 Romp Over Lionettes

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 - by John Hunt

The Signal Mountain Lady Eagles have one of the better volleyball teams in town this fall and it’s no surprise that they are unbeaten in district play.

They proved just how good they are Tuesday evening in Red Bank’s Susan Ingram Thurman Gymnasium as they needed about 50 minutes to beat the Lionettes for the second time this season.

Set scores were 25-6, 25-7 and 25-15.

Like the unfair contest between a cat and a mouse, the cat had a wonderful time and basically did whatever he pleased while the mouse had very few options and really didn’t have much fun.  The Eagles pretty much controlled the entire match as they dominated play from the start to the finish.

“I feel like we came ready to play, but we can’t afford not to in a match here at Red Bank, said first-year Signal Mountain head coach Bailee Barrett after her team had improved to 27-7 overall and 5-0 in District 7-AA.

“We had a bad taste in our mouth after the River City Rumble this weekend as we just didn’t play very well, but we had a good practice yesterday.  Today we wanted to minimize our errors and just play consistent volleyball.  I think we were able to do that.

“We challenged them to do the little things well as those little things add up in a hurry.  Red Bank has some really good athletes, but the key for us was that we passed well and had a lot of hitting options up front.  When all of that is clicking, we’re pretty hard to beat.

“We’re blessed to have three really good hitters up front and that can be hard to stop when there’s more than one choice.  We have a bunch of experienced seniors, but we also have a group of freshmen who are still learning, so there’s still plenty of room for us to get better,” Barrett added.

Red Bank coach Savannah Nelson could only sit and watch as her team simply got whipped by a much better opponent.  Despite the lopsided loss, there were still some bright spots for the Lionettes and positives to build on.

“Signal Mountain is a really experienced team and most of them play club ball.  That may have been the biggest difference as we just couldn’t find an open spot.  They move really well and they’re just down right a really good volleyball team.

“We had so many unforced errors while they didn’t make many mistakes.  I was really pleased with our defense at the beginning as we were able to pick up some balls that hit the floor the last time we played.  But we’ll keep working and hope that we play better next time,” Nelson said after her team fell to 13-14 overall and 1-2 in district play.

The Lionettes never led in this match and the score was only tied twice and that was at 1-1 in each of the first two sets.  Everything the Lady Eagles tried worked while next to nothing the Lionettes attempted had a positive outcome.

Maia Rackel, one of Signal’s seniors who redefines hard hits at the net, controlled play up front and from the service line.  She led the Lady Eagles with 11 kills and 17 digs, but she also had three aces.  She recorded 10 straight points in the first set as a 6-3 Signal Mountain lead quickly expanded and the set ended on a block by Cora Hansen.

Francie Hunt had eight straight service points in the second set as the Lady Eagles stretched a 2-1 lead to 10-1 before a hitting error provided Red Bank’s next point.

Shelby Romans had back-to-back kills for about the only bright spot on Red Bank’s side in that second set, but a kill from Kate Barry on the next serve gave the Lady Eagles a commanding 2-0 lead.

Hannah Wood had a couple of kills for Red Bank in the third set.  Mya Kennebrew had two kills as well while Layla Babb and Bailee Phillips both had an ace, but 18-12 was about as close as Red Bank would get as the Lady Eagles finished out the match on a 7-3 run.

Red Bank will play at Sequatchie County on Wednesday while Signal Mountain will also be on the road for a match at Walker Valley.

Player information for Red Bank was also entered incorrectly in the team ipad, so there were no stats for Red Bank.

SIGNAL MOUNTAIN STATS:

Kate Barry – 2 aces, 6 kills, 26 assists, 8 digs

Cora Hansen – 5 kills, 1 dig, 1 block

Alexia Hensley – 5 digs

Francie Hunt – 3 aces, 3 digs, 1 assist

Megan Kincer – 3 assists, 1 kill

Mackenzie Lewis – 1 ace, 4 kills, 10 digs

Briley Lowry – 7 digs, 2 aces

Olivia Powers – 10 kills, 1 block

Maia Rackel – 3 aces, 11 kills, 17 digs.

(Email John Hunt at nomarathonmoose@gmail.com)



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