Story and Photos by Rusty Ellis
The Cookeville Lady Cavs finished off a regular-season sweep of rival White County with their 3-2 win on Monday.
The Warriorettes started off the opening frame in dominant fashion, taking as a big as a 24-12 lead before a Lady Cavs timeout. CHS battled back to cut the lead all the way down to one at 24-23, but White County got a kill from Nia Powers to end the first set and take a 1-0 lead.
A back-and-forth second set saw the Lady Cavs knot the match at 1-all after they won 25-21, and then the visitors got within a set of winning the match with a 25-22 win in the third set.
White County didn’t go away quietly however, as they built too much momentum for the Lady Cavs to handle and won the fourth set 25-16 to force an all-decisive fifth set.
With the game hanging in the balance and the score tied at 10 in the fifth set, Cookeville reeled off five unanswered points to win the match 3-2, clinching a season-sweep of rival White County for first-year head coach Chris Bell.
“I’m not from here, but I’ve heard it’s a big rivalry and when you play a rival, you’ve got to take it personal,” Bell said. “We had some different players out and at one time, we had five sophomores on the court at one time…they found a way to win. It wasn’t pretty, but they found a way to win.”
Battling through adversity became the theme of the match, something that Bell hopes prepares his team for the postseason.
“We’ve been tested, but it’s a different kind of tested when it’s at a rival’s facilities,” Bell said. “These girls have faced a lot, it’s been one thing or another…we’ve just got to boss up and get better.”
The Lady Cavs will battle at home against Wilson Central on Tuesday, while White County will take on Livingston Academy on Friday.