Times Staff Reporter
CLAY CITY -- Clay City's volleyball team ended their regular season with a bang, taking a 3-1 decision against WRV on senior night.
The Eels lone senior Kelly McCullough was honored in a brief ceremony before the game. She said her teammates told her they were very dedicated to making sure she got a win in her final home game, and she was happy to work with them to assure it happened.
"This was an important game for me," McCullough said. "This is the last time I will play on this floor with these girls. I love them all."
McCullough then used her serve to help Clay City jump out to a 6-0 lead in game one. The Wolverines tried to make a game of it, pulling to within 11-7.
Freshman star Callie Dayhuff saw that the rally did not last, kick starting a 7-0 run with three aces. The Eels were never contested again, pulling out the first game 25-12.
WRV got off to a considerably quicker start, taking a 5-3 lead early in game two. Lynsey Higgins then proceeded to go on a miniature rampage to help Clay City build a decisive two game lead. An impressive serve mixed with solid all around defense propelled the Eels to an 8-0 run and an 11-5 lead. After the Wolverines got within two at 19-17, Higgins put the clamps on with three kills, and the Eels took the second game 25-20.
Game three saw another slow start for Clay City. This time however, they were unable to recover. WRV jumped out to a 6-0 lead, and while Clay City made things closer, they were never able to establish any momentum to speak of, and dropped a 25-19 decision.
The Eels finally put a wrap on things in game four. The game was back-and-forth for long stretches, eventually leading to a 12-12 tie. Higgins and McCullough, the team's co-captains, then took center stage again to propel Clay City to victory.
Higgins gave the Eels the lead at 13-12 with a devastating kill. This was quickly followed by a McCullough block and yet another Higgins kill, putting the game firmly in Clay City's control. A Dayhuff kill finalized things, and the Eels took a three games to one decision, winning game four 25-15.
Coach Cindy Gerber said the win gives her team a boost heading into sectional play next week.
"I thought we played like we wanted to win tonight," Gerber said. "We had a significant lull in the third game, but for the most part the girls knew what they were doing and were working very hard."
The win upped Clay City's record to 16-9. Following a tournament Saturday morning, Clay City will head into sectional play, drawing North Central in the first round of the Shakamak Sectional next Tuesday. Gerber said she believed her team was "up for a sectional win." McCullough echoed her coach's sentiments and said she was eager to lead her team into the postseason.
"I feel really confident in what we can do," McCullough said. "When we come ready to play, we can beat anybody."
Clay City returns to action Saturday, in a three-way tournament with host Linton and South Vermillion. The first game begins at 10 a.m.
At Clay City
Clay City 3, WRV 1
Next match: Clay City travels to Linton for a three-way tournament, which also features South Vermillion at 10 a.m. Saturday morning.