Times Sports Editor
The Northview volleyball team honored three seniors, Alexus Bex, Hannah Willocks and Brylie Riddell prior to Monday's contest against Danville and gave the trio a victory in their final home match, 25-16, 25-11, 25-16.
"All three (seniors) have contributed a lot while they've been here. We've had Hannah (Willocks) for two years and Brylie (Riddell) has been a varsity starter since she stepped into the gym," McDonald said. "She's made a ton of contributions to Northview volleyball and Alexus (Bex) has been the same way. They are just three great kids and three that I wouldn't trade for anybody else."
Playing different combinations to start the match, the Knights had some ragged moments in game one before pulling away during the middle of the set.
The second game went much smoother for the Knights, who jumped ahead 7-0 on a pair of kills by Riddell, one from McKenzi Kumpf and another by Stearley.
Danville rallied back as Courtney Leisch had a block along with freshman Olivia Hartman. However, the Warriors followed them with a pair of hitting errors as the lead grew to 12-6. The Knights' Mikayla Rowan added one of her four blocks as she entered the game and followed with a kill. Morris added two of her four aces and the Knights had opened a 19-6 lead and finished off a dominant, game two victory.
"We always want to play the seniors all the way in the first game, so we had some people out of position, but we played a lot better today than we did Saturday against (Danville)," McDonald said. "We're happy with the direction we are heading, but we have some things we can work on and hopefully this week we can do that."
It was apparent at times during the match that the Knights were working on some new accents to their offense and Riddell took advantage of a couple of the wrinkles to add to her game-high 13 kills.
"We've been putting some new things in the last few weeks," McDonald said. "Our timing is getting a lot better on that. We're going to have to be able to do those types of things in order to confuse Martinsville in the first round (of the sectional)."
Danville actually grabbed its first lead in the third set at 9-8 before Riddell recorded a service ace and Rowan followed with a kill. Willocks helped serve up a 4-0 run midway through the set to extend the Knights' lead to 18-13 on a kill by Kumpf and Riddell. Northview would finish out the game on a 6-1 run as Taylor Hess added an ace and a miscommunication by the Warriors led to the final point.
Bex had three kills for the Knights to go with an assist and Willocks had two kills, 11 digs and an ace. Riddell finished with four digs, a block and two aces in her final home contest. Kumpf provided 12 kills, Audrey Clark had five digs with McDonald adding 10 and Ashley Heck posted two. McDonald also had 16 assists with Hess adding 14 and Stearley had six.
In the junior varsity match, the Knights won 25-14, 25-12 to improve to 17-3 this season.
Next match: Northview (26-5 overall) travels to Crawfordsville tonight at 6 p.m.