CENTENARY, Ohio — A dominant half-decade.
The Gallia Academy volleyball team clinched its fifth consecutive Ohio Valley Championship on its home court on Tuesday, with the Blue Angels defeating guest Fairland in straight games.
Gallia Academy (19-2, 13-0 OVC) — which is a perfect 35-0 at home in OVC play in the five-year reign — trailed at 1-0 in the opening game of Tuesday’s match, but scored the next five points and never looked back on the way to the 25-8 victory.
The Blue Angels — who have now 56 straight league matches, including 29 by way of sweep — led wire-to-wire in the second set, moving up 2-0 in the match with a 25-15 win.
The Blue and White trailed 3-1 in the finale, but scored five of the next six points. GAHS never trailed again en route to the 25-16 victory in the third, which is the 88th consecutive set the Blue Angels have won in league play.
Following the victory, sixth-year Gallia Academy head coach Janice Rosier noted that her team seems to be hitting its stride at the right moment, and talked about the work the Blue Angels have been doing to reach this point.
“I keep seeing improvement, and we’re peaking, hopefully, at the right time,” Rosier said. “We work on changing up our offense a little bit, we’re not real big, but we are quick, so we use that a lot. We work on our defense on a daily basis, trying to make that stronger for when we see some of these bigger, faster teams.”
Rosier also credited the Blue Angels for hard work they’ve put in to keep the program’s winning tradition alive and well.
“These girls come to practice every day and give 110,” Rosier said. “They understand that it’s just part of the program, and if you want to play for Gallia Academy that’s what it takes, and they do it every day.”
Bailey Barnette led the Blue Angel service attack with 16 points, including one ace. MaKenna Caldwell was next with 11 points and two aces. Peri Martin contributed six points to the winning cause, Maddie Wright chipped in with five points and two aces, while Alex Barnes and Maddy Petro added four points apiece, with an ace by Petro.
Barnes led the hosts at the net with 15 kills and two blocks. Next, Petro claimed eight kills and two blocks, and Wright posted six kills and four blocks. Martin and Barnette earned two kills apiece, with Martin also picking up a block and a team-best 29 assists. Abby Hammons came up with two blocks in the win.
Prior to Tuesday’s match, Gallia Academy honored seniors Alex Barnes, Peri Martin and Maddie Wright, playing their final regular season home game for the Blue Angels.
GAHS also swept Fairland on Sept. 10 in Proctorville.
The Blue and White — ranked 18th in the latest OHSVCA Division II Poll — will finish the regular season on Thursday at South Point.
Alex Hawley can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2100.