CENTENARY, Ohio — A mediocre middle in an otherwise smooth evening.
The Gallia Academy volleyball team claimed a straight games win over Ohio Valley Conference guest Coal Grove on Thursday in Gallia County, with the Blue Angels winning by counts of 25-11, 25-23 and 25-9.
The Lady Hornets led 2-0 in the opening game, but Gallia Academy (12-1, 8-0 OVC) took the lead at 5-4 and never relinquished it. CGHS was back to within a point at 9-8, but the Blue Angels rattled off 11 straight points and eventually won the first 25-to-11.
Gallia Academy jumped out to a 7-3 lead in the second game, but Coal Grove fought back to take the advantage at 12-11. GAHS regained the edge at 13-12, but couldn’t make its lead bigger than one, and wound up giving the edge back to the guests at 20-19. The Blue Angels, however, won the next two points and didn’t trail again en route to the 25-23 win.
After the Lady Hornets won the first point of the third game, GAHS claimed the next three and never looked back on the way to the match-clinching 25-9 win.
The Blue Angels — 19th in the latest OHSVCA Division II Coaches Poll — now have 11 wins in a row, as well as 51 consecutive OVC victories. GAHS hasn’t dropped a set in league play in its last 73 chances.
Gallia Academy finished with a 66.7 side-out percentage, as well as a 95.9 serve percentage, while Coal Grove had a 38.7 side-out percentage and a 91.1 serve percentage.
Maddy Petro led the Blue and White with 18 service points, including 10 aces. MaKenna Caldwell was next with 12 points and three aces, followed by Maddie Wright with seven points and three aces, and Bailey Barnett with five points and one ace. Alex Barnes rounded out the GAHS service attack with three points. Petro, Caldwell, Wright and Barnett each had perfect serve percentages in to the win.
The Blue Angel net attack was led by Barnes with 14 kills and two blocks. Wright and Petro had eight kills apiece for the victors, with Wright also picking up a block. Bailey Barnette — who led the GAHS defense with 11 of the team’s 39 digs — posted four kills, Peri Martin added two kills and a match-best 33 assists, while Abby Hammons chipped in with one kill.
Leading Coal Grove, Addi Dillow and Kaleigh Murphy had seven points apiece, with four aces by Dillow. Hailey Booth also earned a service point for the guests. Dillow and Murphy also led CGHS at the net with six kills apiece.
GAHS also swept Coal Grove in the season-opener on Aug. 22 in Lawrence County.
After the Circleville tournament on Saturday, the Blue Angels will invade Portsmouth on Monday.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.