MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Cleveland’s Lady Blue Raiders came up short on Wednesday, suffered a 3-1 loss to Collierville and were ousted from the TSSAA Class AAA state volleyball tournament at Middle Tennessee State University.
Appearing in its second straight state tourney – the program’s only two trips to Murfreesboro – Cleveland lost to powerful Brentwood and beat Houston on Tuesday and then dropped the decision to Collierville in an elimination match.
Set scores were 25-20, 20-25, 27-25 and 25-20.
“Collierville didn’t see the Cleveland we know we can be,” Lady Raiders coach Trish Flowers said.
“I’m proud we made it this far again, but I thought we were a top four team. We didn’t show that today.”
The Lady Dragons scored the final six points to claim the first set.
Showing the spunk that drove the Lady Raiders to District 6-3A and Region 3-3A tournament titles, plus a win in Sectionals, they clawed back with a win in Set 2.
Trailing for a big chunk of the set, Cleveland scored four straight points – two Emma Flowers kills, a Nicole Glaser ace and a Collierville error – and took a 19-17 lead. At 22-20, the Lady Raiders got a kill from Flowers, a serve return point and Hayley Brockman’s kill that sailed past the baseline gave the win to Cleveland.
The Lady Raiders led 25-24 on Anna Renshaw’s block in Set 3, but the Lady Dragons rallied with three straight points to win and take a 2-1 lead.
Collierville had another strong finish in the finale, scoring four straight points to close out the match, the last two coming on errant kill shots by Flowers.
Anna Renshaw – 3 aces, ½ block, 8 digs, 41 assists
Emma Flowers – 2 aces, 3 ½ blocks, 13 digs, 32 kills
Hannah Longley – 1ace, 24 digs, 1 assist
Joy Douglass – 2 aces, ½ block, 17 digs
Kenli Young – 3 digs
Lily Oliver – 1 ½ blocks, 3 digs
Lydia Martin – 13 digs
Nicole Glaser – 3 aces, 1 ½ blocks, 7 digs, 10 kills
Sofia Lakatosh – ½ block, 4 digs, 3 kills
(Contact Larry Fleming at email@example.com and on Twitter @larryfleming44)