By Christy Sheets
The Wallace Wildcats competed in the Wallace Triangular on Tuesday, Sept. 6. The Cats’ first opponent was the Falcons of Hitchcock County. The Cats played well but lost their first match of the night in straight sets 16-25, 22-25.
In the first set the Falcons took the early lead, but the Wildcats rallied back with the help of some great serving by juniors Anna Griffiths and Chelsea Sowle to tie the set at 11.
Although the Wildcats played with intensity, the Lady Cats seemed to be lacking in communication. The Falcons won the first set 25 to 16.
The Wildcats started the set strong, but the Falcons regained control. The Lady Cats rallied back, and after an ace serve by junior Katelyn Melton, they trailed the Falcons by just one–20 to 21. The Wildcats made some good plays, but really seemed to struggle to build any momentum, and unfortunately the Falcons won the second set 22 to 25.
When asked about the match, coach Rohde said, “The girls played pretty well. We had some really nice plays, but never did get into a rhythm.”
Leading the team offensively against Hitchcock County was junior Chelsea Sowle with four points, followed closely by junior Katelyn Melton (two aces) and sophomore Sara Hubbard both with three points. Junior Anna Griffiths had two points, and seniors Emily Hasenauer and Brooke Hochstetler each had one point. Leading the team with set assists was Griffiths with six, followed closely by Hasenauer with five.
Defensively, Sowle led the team with three kills and three blocks, followed closely by Hochstetler with five kills and Hubbard with four kills. Griffiths and Melton each had one kill.
Wallace vs. Perkins County
The Lady Cats then had to face the hard-hitting Perkins County Plainsmen. The Wildcats played their best match of the season, however, the Plainsmen defeated the Cats 18-25, 25-23, and 25-27.
The Lady Cats struggled a bit in the first set, falling behind the Plainmen early. With some words from the bench, and on a service run by junior Anna Griffiths, the Cats began to build some momentum. Unfortunately the Plainmen took the first set 18 to 25.
In the second set the Wildcats seemed energized, never really letting Perkins County build any momentum. The Wildcats battled hard and won their first set of the season 25 to 23.
In the third, the Plainsmen rallied back, forcing the Cats to take a timeout to settle down. Once again junior Anna Griffiths had a great service run to rally the Lady Cats. The Plainsmen had the first set point, but the Cats refused to let anything drop to tie the set at 25. The Plainsmen rallied to finish off the set and match 25 to 27.
When asked about the match, Coach Rohde said, “The girls put forth a great effort.” He added, “I never feel good about a loss, but tonight I feel good about the way we performed. It could have easily been our win.”
Leading the team offensively against Perkins County was Griffiths with 16 points (one ace). Melton (three aces) and Sowle (one ace) each had six points, Hochstetler had (one ace) five points, and Hasenauer had one point. Leading the team with set assists was Hasenauer with seven, followed by Griffiths with three, and Melton and Freshman Morgan Messersmith each with one.
Defensively, Hochstetler and Sowle led the team each with seven kills and three blocks. Hubbard had four kills, Melton had two kills, and setter Griffiths had one kill.
The Lady Cats will travel to Hayes Center to play in their varsity and junior varsity triangular on Tuesday, Sept. 13. The Cats will face Hayes Center and Dundy County.
On Friday, Sept. 16, the Cats will face Sandhills-Thedford in Dunning with C team starting at 3 p.m.