North Platte St. Pat’s played their best late in all three sets on Thursday as they swept Perkins County 25-13, 25-13, 25-22 at the McGahan Activities Center.
“I thought it was a great game for the girls,” St. Pat’s volleyball coach Janet Victory said. “We had a lot of blocks. Our serve-receive was spot on and so was our digging. We got a lot of points from blocking and I thought our serving created a lot of points.”
In the first set, neither team got much of an advantage over the other for the first 10 points. A kill by Rachel Heiss gave St. Pat’s (2-2) the lead at 12-11 and gave the serve to Jayla Fleck. Fleck then ran off seven straight points to give control to the Lady Irish.
The two teams traded points for the next four plays before St. Pat’s scored five straight with Heiss serving to end the set.
The second set played out similarly as there were eight lead changes for the first 10 points. But the Irish got some cushion when Graci Castillo served for an ace to make it 12-9.
The lead grew from there. It became 17-11 after Heiss made a kill. The 5’6″ junior Heiss then served for six straight to give St. Pat’s setpoint. Perkins County (0-5) fought it off for a play before the Irish finished them off.
St. Pat’s didn’t have as easy a time in the third. Perkins County tightened up their serve-receive. Middle blocker Jocylin Sellers also left the game with a seemingly minor knee injury and that allowed the Lady Plainsmen to have free reign at the net.
But the Irish didn’t let Perkins County extend the match. With the score tied at 21, Jenna Kimberling made a kill in the middle to give St. Pat’s the lead. Castillo then served for an ace to make it a two-point lead.
Castillo served the ball into the net on the next play. But Heiss made a kill on the left side to make it matchpoint.
Perkins County charged into the net on the next play ending and giving the Irish the sweep.
“We worked on a little different coverage third set getting ready for this weekend (at the Lexington tournament),” Victory said. “Our girls struggled a little bit on adjusting to that new coverage but we came out with a win in three.”