Savannah Voelzke Leads No. 4 Spring Hill Past Crosstown Rival Pine Tree in Five
LONGVIEW — Spring Hill and Pine Tree took their crosstown rivalry to five games Tuesday night at the Pirate Center.
Spring Hill senior Savannah Voelzke registered 17 kills to add to her eight blocks and two digs, and the Lady Panthers defeated the Lady Pirates in a dramatic, five-game match, 25-12, 19-25, 21-25, 25-20, 15-8.
Spring Hill, ranked No. 4 in Class 3A, had minimal problems in the first game. However, behind the three straight blocks and five kills from Pine Tree (12-3) standout sophomore Sky Holmes, the Lady Pirates battled back to win the second game.
The third game pushed both teams to their limit. Jacey Fleet hammered down three kills to go along with her three digs as Spring Hill attempted to win the third game to put the Lady Panthers ahead 2-1 in the match.
Pine Tree had a different idea.
The Lady Pirates, the No. 7 team in 4A, utilized the unforced errors of the Lady Panthers to their advantage. Behind a stellar performance at the service line by setter Emily Shelton, Pine Tree clawed back to win its second straight game.
In game four, Fleet and Voelzke combined for seven digs and six kills as the Lady Panthers and Lady Pirates stayed neck-and-neck until the final five points when Spring Hill dominated at the net, finding the holes in Pine Tree’s defense.
The Lady Pirates could not stop the Lady Panthers after that.
In the final game of the evening, Spring Hill rallied with seven straight points by defensive specialist Allison Akins and four impressive digs by Fleet to claim the match.
“We are playing as a very competitive team,” Spring Hill coach Karen Brundrett said. “To play as a team is what is most important. We talked about composure after the third game and when you come up against a big blocker like Sky Holmes, you have to figure out a way to get the ball past her and obviously we were able to do that.”
Other big contributors in the match included Spring Hill’s Rachel Riestenberg, who finished the night with 19 assists.
Pine Tree’s Holmes ended the match with 14 kills and four blocks after only playing four of the five games of the match. Shelton recorded 37 assists and Brittany Hollis knocked down 11 kills.
Spring Hill returns to action this weekend in the Robinson tournament. Pine Tree, meanwhile, is competing in the Tyler tournament.