The first two sets were neck and neck between the two rivals, Highlands School and Blue Ridge Early College. However, Highlands meshed as a team in the third set to finish the match strong 3-0.
“Our serves were amazing,” said Highlands Head Coach Katy Postell. “These were the best serving games these girls have ever had.”
Coupled with good serves was the power of Senior Night, which Postell added it was her first senior night victory of her coaching career.
“My seniors did it, they were so fired up,” she said. “They moved, they played, they wanted it, they did an amazing job tonight.”
Highlands seniors Tristan Castro, Hannah Holt and Abby Olvera were honored after the second set for Senior Night and were recognized for their athletic contributions to Highlands School over four years. And all of the aforementioned players had strong net games tonight.
“I think we had fun, that was really important,” said Olvera. “It feels really good. We came out and played probably our best game ever.”
She added that it was not an easy victory.
“They were really scrappy,” she said. “They were putting it where we weren’t and we had to be ready at all times.”
Castro said she has been looking forward to Senior Night since she was a freshman and tonight’s win meant a lot to her.
“I think the team came out strong,” she said. “But then it was neck and neck in the first two sets. We had to fight to win it, it was not easy.”
There were several long points of systematic bump, set, spike and rinse and repeat with points stacking up for both teams. Blue Ridge sophomore Madeline Potts said she felt they could have done better.
“I guess we played ok, but when we mess up we get mad at ourselves.”
Blue Ridge sophomore Ella Day said they made several mistakes that cost them.
“It wasn’t the best game, but we still had some good plays,” said Day. “By the third set our attitudes just killed us.”
Blue Ridge libero and junior Kaitlyn Stewart spent much of the game parallel to the ground diving to save the ball. She agreed that Blue Ridge’s attitude played a big part in their third set breakdown.
“We could have played better,” she said. “We fell apart and couldn’t get our timing down, we were completely out of sync.”
Postell said tonight’s win locks up second place in conference and could potentially lead to the State Championships.
Article and photos by Brian O’Shea
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