Lady Punchers net two conference wins
PINEDALE – The Homecoming game between the Big Piney Lady Punchers and conference opponent Wyoming Indian High School (WIHS) came down to the wire on Friday, Sept. 15.
Big Piney won the first two sets. WIHS tied a neck-and-neck third set at 23 points.
Resolved to defend the home court, Big Piney scored point 24, retaking the lead by a single point.
The Puncher Gym buzzed with energy as folks in the crowd lifted their index fingers to signify game point. Holding their breath, members of the crowd watched as the Lady Punchers slammed the ball over the net into WIHS territory. WIHS failed to return the volley.
The Lady Punchers on the court and sideline raised their arms in triumph and the crowd erupted as Big Piney scored game point, 25-23, to net a decisive 3-0 conference victory against WIHS.
“The Wyoming Indian game was one that I am truly proud of the girls for,” said Head Coach Kinsy Voss. “They kept their eyes forward and kept chipping away. It’s always a mental game when a team comes back from deficits. Lady Red played one point at a time to pull out the three wins. Not only are these girls athletically talented but they have a blast, work hard and are competitive.”
Returning to the court on Saturday morning, Big Piney trounced conference rival, St. Stephens, 3-0.
“The St. Stephens game was one we wanted to practice some different hits with,” said Coach Voss. “Homecoming was a success this year, for all Big Piney athletics!”
Big Piney pulled ahead early in the first set with serves by junior Kendra Willoughby. Sophomore Kodee Greene tapped over a point and juniors Micah Strong and Addison Losik each delivered kills.
Strong aced two serves and Losik followed up with a pair of kills. Freshman Jada Banks widened Big Piney’s lead with back-to-back serves.
Losik spiked over point 20. Strong struck from the net to score point 22. Banks tapped over point 24. WIHS struck out returning a hit by sophomore Brylie Bailey and Big Piney won the first set, 25-19.
WIHS attempted to turn the tables in the second set with a 5-point run. Undeterred, Big Piney answered back with a kill from Greene and an ace by Banks.
Strong, Losik and Banks delivered a series of powerful kills. Greene scored with a spike and a serve.
Sophomore Lizzy Brandt closed the deficit by acing a serve, tying the game at 22 points. WIHS overshot the ball returning a serve by Willoughby and Big Piney gained the initiative, 24-23.
WIHS managed to tie the set at 25 points. Coverage by Willoughby, Brandt and Strong placed the Lady Punchers back in the lead, 25-24. Greene slammed over a kill to score game point, 26-24.
Freshman Kaity Shreve scored the opening point in the third set. Big Piney remained ahead with points from Strong, Shreve, Greene and Banks.
WIHS edged up until Brandt bumped over a point to tie the set at point 17. Strong replied to WIHS’s next point with a kill, resulting in a deadlock at 18 points.
Losik spiked a point and the Lady Punchers recaptured the lead, 19-18. WIHS overtook Big Piney until Bailey slammed over a hit to tie the set at 21 points.
Brandt whipped up a serve and coverage by Banks established a 2-point lead for the Lady Punchers, 23-21.
WIHS closed the gap at 23 points. Bailey powered up a kill for point 24 and the Lady Punchers slammed over game point, 25-23.
The Lady Punchers set the momentum in the first set with an 11-point run. Banks aced her serve for game point, 25-11.
Showing no mercy in the second set, Big Piney clobbered St. Stephens, 25-9. Willoughby served up game point.
The Lady Punchers handily won the third set, 25-7. Banks, Brandt and junior Mari Sambrano each aced their serves and Greene made a block for game point.