GALLIPOLIS, Ohio — There were signs of growth, despite the final outcome.
The Ohio Valley Christian School volleyball team showed signs of life early on, but it ultimately couldn’t capitalize against visiting Ironton St. Joe Tuesday night as the Lady Flyers beat the Lady Defenders by a 3-1 count in Gallia County.
OVCS (0-3) struggled early, allowing St. Joe to go up by nine points in the first game. The Lady Defenders started to come back thanks to four service points from freshman Makala Sizemore. However, it wasn’t enough to overcome the early deficit and the Flyers won Game 1 by a 25-14 margin.
While the Blue and Gold were down, they were not out. After getting through some early match jitters in the first game, the Lady Defenders got out in front early in the Game 2 and fought to keep the positive momentum going. With the help of Katie Westfall’s seven points, including four kills and an ace, OVCS held off the Flyers and tied the match with a 25-21 win.
The Lady Defenders continued to pour on the points in the third game and were up 5-0 early on. The Flyers regained momentum and drove the score up to 17-9. Westfall’s three aces helped OVCS fight back late in the game and tied up the score at 23-all. The Flyers cooled off the comeback and won the third game 25-23.
OVCS lost its momentum down the stretch after allowing St. Joe to go up by as many as 12 points midway through the game. The Lady Defenders never regained their footing and the Flyers sealed the match victory with a 25-11 final in game four.
Westfall led the Lady Defenders with 18 service points, while Sizemore and Emily Childers each had 14 service points. Ann Bowman had 13 points, followed by Ashley Childers with 12 points.
“It was a tough game,” OVCS head coach Suzanne Johnson. “We pulled one out there and the other matches were close.”
Johnson said that, despite a rebuilding year, she’s pleased with the progress her squad is making.
“When you lose six players off of a team and you’re having a rebuilding year, for the girls to perform the way they did, I am extremely proud of them. They dug deep and they never gave up and that’s what I’m most proud of. We’re doing our best to get improvement every game and I’m perfectly pleased with the performance.”
The Lady Defenders’ next game will take place at Calvary on Friday at 6 p.m.
Donald Lambert can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2106