After dropping their conference volleyball opener at Charleston, the Booneville LadyCats needed to get their confidence boosted when they returned home to play Lincoln. In the first set, there was perhaps a hangover as the Lady Wolves hung around, but a power display at the end of that set, primarily from Keara Ross, put that game away and then it was business as usual. The LadyCats stormed to an 8-2 lead in the second set and never looked back as they brushed aside Lincoln (25-19, 25-9, 25-10).
The LadyCats continue their homestand Thursday as they play Elkins before they hit the road next Monday and Tuesday to Hackett and Paris respectively.
Charleston def. LadyCats (25-20, 25-11, 25-23)
Taylor Miller and Aleeah Blansett had early kills but then Charleston made a run. With Jadyn Womack at the serve line, the Lady Tigers ran off seven points in a row to lead 10-5. Miller had two kills and Blansett a block as BHS tried to push back, getting within 13-11, but Charleston then made another seven-point run, this time with Womack attacking from the outside. Emma Ramey scored an ace and Blansett scored another kill to get it to 22-19, but the LadyCats got no closer.
Booneville could not get any kind of a foothold in the second game; after getting within 6-4 on Maddie Herrera’s dump into the middle, they were then hit with a 10-4 run. Herrera got another drop shot to go and Miller and Ross added kills, but that was all, Early in the third game, it was more of the same as Charleston sprinted to a 12-6 lead but then the LadyCats came off the deck. With Brooklyn Zarlingo serving, Blansett swatted a Womack kill attempt, then Zarlingo served two aces around a Blansett kill which was followed by a Miller spike, and Booneville had the lead. The LadyCats then seemed to take control as Ross got a kill, Melissa Humble ripped an ace and Herrera pushed one to the corner for 20-15. Charleston, though, pushed back to take the lead; Zarlingo evened it with a kill and the LadyCats grabbed a 23-22 lead but Womack scored two kills in the last three points for the Charleston win.
Miller scored with eight kills, with Blansett, Zarlingo and Herrera getting credit for four each. Blansett also had five blocks, but in the end Womack’s 13 kills put Charleston over the top.
LadyCats def. Lincoln (25-19, 25-9, 25-10)
Booneville went out to a 4-1 lead but found Lincoln to be a pesky opponent in the early going. The Lady Wolves actually took a 7-6 lead before Emma Ramey’s kill started a five-point run which also featured kills by Keara Ross and Aleeah Blansett. Ross’s ace and a Lincoln error pushed it to 14-9 but after a Miller kill and a Blansett ace, the Lady Wolves fought back again with a six-point puch to get within 19-18. But after the teams traded side-outs, Ramey got another kill and Ross had three spikes in the last four points for the win.
Brooklyn Zarlingo had been serving during that run and started the second game on the line with an ace, and then Taylor Miller went kill-block-kill for a 4-0 lead. Blansett got two kills with Kelsey Mikles and Ramey getting one each for 11-2 and then the LadyCats really poured it on. Maddie Herrera dropped one in the middle, Miller served two aces and Mikles got another kill before Blansett whacked two kills to take game two. She also grabbed the first point in game three and Herrera followed with an ace, and a kill by Ramey and two unreturnable Miller serves made it 7-2. The decisive run came on Ramey’s serve and was started with a Zarlingo kill. Ramey followed with an ace and Blansett fired two volleyballs straight down for 16-6. The next time Herrera got to the serve line, she did not leave it as the senior setter racked up consecutive aces before feeding Blansett for the last two points.
Blansett ripped 11 kills and did not miss an attack in 18 attempts, while also making 12 digs. Ramey and Ross added five kills each with Herrera getting 26 assists and adding three aces. Miller and Mikles had four aces each as Booneville evened their conference record.