Lady Cougars eliminated in district play


By Don Brown



Bailey Martin went up for a kill during the first set.


Miranda Boaz bumped a ball from the back row during first-set action.


Shelby Watkins served eight straight points, including three aces, during the first set, only to see the Lady Raiders come back to take the set.


Katelyn Bratcher set a ball during the first set.


After leading by as many as 10 points in the first set of Grayson County’s opening-round match against Whitesville Trinity, the Lady Cougars were stunned by a huge Lady Raider comeback which swept them to eventual victory in four sets, 26-24, 25-23, 13-25, 25-19.

The Lady Cougars were never really able to recover from that first-set loss. They fell behind by as many as nine points in the second set before making a comeback to make it close. They ran away with the third set, but could not sustain that energy and dropped the fourth set to end their season.

The Lady Raiders, who were backed by a boisterous home crowd, went on to down top-seeded Edmonson County Thursday evening, 3-1, and will go into next week’s 3rd Region Tournament as the 12th District champion.

Grayson County led by two points, 13-11, when senior Shelby Watkins took the serve for the Lady Cougars. Grayson County reeled off eight straight points, including three Watkins aces to take what seemed an insurmountable, 21-11 first-set lead.

But the Lady Raiders raced back into contention, pulling to within five points, 23-18, before a kill by Meredith Pawley gave Grayson County its first set-point, 24-18.

The Lady Raiders then battled through five straight Grayson County set-points to pull to within a point of the lead 24-23. Trinity then won the next two points for a set-point of their own, and when senior setter Katelyn Bratcher was whistled for a double-hit while trying to set a ball, the Trinity crowd went nuts over the comeback win.

The Lady Cougars resembled the walking dead in the second set as they fell behind by nine points, 2-11. But they seemed to recover a bit at that point, and began chipping away at the lead.

After a Trinity setting error brought the Lady Cougars to within two points at 18-20, Pawley served four straight points and it looked as though the Lady Cougars were on their way to their own comeback win, ahead 22-20.

But Trinity regained the lead and had a set-point at 23-24, and when the Lady Cougars messed up a return, Trinity had a commanding two-set advantage.

Grayson County led nearly the whole way in the third set and never let the Lady Raiders into the set. The Lady Cougars led by as many as 13 points before a Trinity hitting error on set-point gave them the win.

The final set was close from the start, but Trinity was able to take a four-point lead at 18-14. The Lady Cougars got back to within two points twice, but could not get closer. Facing match-point at 19-24, the Lady Cougars were unable to make a return of a volley and the Lady Raiders celebrated their win.

Bailey Martin went up for a kill during the first set.
http://gcnewsgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/web1_Bailey_M_cmyk.jpgBailey Martin went up for a kill during the first set.

Miranda Boaz bumped a ball from the back row during first-set action.
http://gcnewsgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/web1_Miranda_cmyk1.jpgMiranda Boaz bumped a ball from the back row during first-set action.

Shelby Watkins served eight straight points, including three aces, during the first set, only to see the Lady Raiders come back to take the set.
http://gcnewsgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/web1_Shelby_Sv_cmyk.jpgShelby Watkins served eight straight points, including three aces, during the first set, only to see the Lady Raiders come back to take the set.

Katelyn Bratcher set a ball during the first set.
http://gcnewsgazette.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/web1_Katelyn_cmyk.jpgKatelyn Bratcher set a ball during the first set.

By Don Brown

Reach Don Brown at 259-9622, ext. 2016.

Reach Don Brown at 259-9622, ext. 2016.

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