by Rusty Ellis
The Smith County Lady Owls closed out the home-portion of their schedule on Wednesday, as they won a five-set thriller 3-2 over the Gordonsville Tigerettes.
The Lady Owls dominated the start of the first set, as they jumped out to a 9-1 lead. A Brooke Briggs block got Gordonsville within five at 10-5, but nothing slowed down Smith County on the way to a 25-13 win, as a Chloe Collins block sealed the win.
SCHS started the second with that same energy, as a Suzanna Gammon ace made it 5-1. Gordonsville fought their way back into the set, tying it on a Kamara Young block, and the Tigerettes took a 14-13 lead on a pair of Smith County errors. Trailing 16-13, Smith surged ahead to take a 19-17 lead. From there, the Lady Owls closed the set out for a 25-22 win.
Gordonsville opened the third set with a big 8-1 run, and pushed the lead to 15-6 before before a kill from Collins and an ace from Julia Dickerson cut the deficit to seven. It was all Gordonsville from there however, as they closed out the set with a 25-15 victory.
A 25-17 win in the fourth set for the Tigerettes forced an all-decisive fifth set. There, Smith once again took an early lead at 5-3 and Abigayle Hackett added onto the lead with a kill to make it 11-8. From there, Hackett’s ace closed out the 15-11 win for Smith County.
“We knew they were going to come back and fight hard to beat us this time since we beat them at their place,” said Smith County head coach Krissa Hackett. “We missed on eight serves and we didn’t play as well as we wanted to, but we found whatever we needed to get the win.”
After taking a 2-0 lead, Smith County appeared to let off the gas and it allowed for the Tigerettes to get back into the match. As far as what Hackett said to get her team back in gear, she said it was all about how much her team wanted the win.
“I just told them they had to dig down deep for this one,” Hackett said. “If they wanted it, they had to fight for it…we have to check that and fix it.”
With the district tournament looming, this is the time when most coaches say they want their team playing their best ball. Hackett says she feels good about where her team is heading into the postseason.
“I feel better, we’ve improved on a lot of things,” Hackett said. “We’re going to be hosting Jo Byrns on Monday, and it’s win-or-g0-home.”
Smith County closes out the regular season on Thursday when they head to Cumberland County, while Gordonsville will prepare for their district tournament.