Spring Hill Beats Lindale + Carthage in Tuesday’s Volleyball Tri-Match
LONGVIEW — Spring Hill showed no hangover from its first loss of the season in this past weekend’s Robinson Tournament.
The Texas Girls Coaches Associaton’s 10th-ranked Class 3A team beat Lindale in four games (25-23, 31-29, 19-25, 25-23) before sweeping 3A No. 17 Carthage (25-20, 25-21, 25-18) in Tuesday night’s volleyball tri-match at Panther Gymnasium.
Spring Hill (17-1) won its first 16 matches of the season before falling 25-18, 25-14 to Class 2A No. 3 Crawford in Saturday’s Robinson Tournament championship. The Lady Panthers came back Tuesday to win 6 of 7 games in their two victories.
“We knew it would be a challenge and we need this kind of challenge. We need games where we have to work for the points. That’s the attitude that we took,” said Spring Hill coach Karen Brundrett, whose team claimed victories Tuesday against opponents that are a combined 33-9. “They did not like the feeling of losing (in the Robinson Tournament championship). We did not play our best game. Crawford played a good championship game. After the game I told them, ‘It’ll tell the tale on Tuesday with what kind of team you are if you really are talking and you will walk that walk that you’re gonna come back and you don’t want to lose and you’ll work, and they did.”
Ann Hollas led Spring Hill’s attack in both wins. She started the tri-match with a big performance against Lindale, recording 21 kills and three blocks before adding 10 kills and three blocks in the nightcap against Carthage. Setter Rachel Riestenberg dished out 56 assists on the evening, while Jacey Fleet had eight kills and five kills in the two matches, respectively.
Against Lindale, Spring Hill’s Jenna Hampton had five kills and seven blocks, while teammate Mikai Brown chipped in with seven kills and one block. Audrey Collier and Hampton combined for nine kills vs. Carthage.
Spring Hill weathered the storm from two of East Texas’ top middle blockers in Lindale’s Zhanelle Geathers and Carthage’s Iesha Bryant, who was offered in person and committed to Tennessee on Monday in Carthage.
Geathers had five kills and five blocks in Lindale’s 3-1 win against Carthage, which got 15 kills and three blocks from Bryant in that match.
Lindale’s accessory weapons produced at a far greater clip, though. Geathers had only five of the Lady Eagles’ 28 kills in the contest, while Bryant and fellow middle blocker Marisah Ingram’s 20 kills accounted for all but five of Carthage’s kills.
“(Geathers) is not my only kid. I’ve got outsides and girls I rotate in off the bench, I trust every one of them to go out there and play really well,” said Lindale coach Meghan Renicker. “We’ve got some depth this year that’s really helping us out a lot.”
Lindale’s Rhyan Rand and Makenna Allen each had eight kills against Carthage. Kaitlin Rice had three kills, two blocks, and four aces. Allen and Rand also had eight kills apiece in the four-game loss to Spring Hill, while Rice and Sarah Crotser had seven kills each. Setter Sydney Tiiman passed for 36 assists vs. Spring Hill to give her 58 for the night.
Bryant and Ingram had even less help in Carthage’s loss to Spring Hill. Bryant finished with a match-high 15 kills and Ingram followed with 14, but those 29 kills accounted for all but three of the Lady Dawgs’ kills in the loss.
“If we don’t get balanced we’re gonna be in trouble,” said Carthage head coach Leven Barker. “That’s the problem with us right now. Our corners, we’ve got to get where we can put the ball down.”
Carthage setter Kenzie Tate had 43 assists on the night. Carthage visits Mineola on Friday and Henderson on Tuesday before playing its second home match in 28 contests next Friday (Sept. 13) against Chapel Hill.
Spring Hill and Lindale play in White Oak’s Shirley Atkins Invitational starting Thursday.