The St. Catharine Lady Patriots (7-4, 2-0 MSC) welcomed the University of Pikeville Bears (3-5, 0-2 MSC) into Lourdes Hall Thursday night and were able to hold on to their lead to remain undefeated in conference with a 3-1 victory.
In game one the Patriots jumped on the Bears 8-3 early, forcing a timeout from the Bear bench. Coming out of the timeout the Patriots were able to maintain their early lead and eventually defeat the Bears 25-16. In set number two the Patriots displayed their ability to compete in close matches with a 25-21 victory. After falling behind early the Patriots were able to cut the lead to two and force Pikeville into yet another timeout. “This game is so much about runs” says Coach Jason McDannold. “Our girls have to maintain consistency and take all of the momentum in every game in order to have success.” With the score 24-21 Patriots’ middle hitter Shauna Stone (Bardstown, Ky) pounded one of her many kills on the night to provide an exclamation point on the St. Catharine victory. “It’s all about finishing, and why not make it count” says Stone.
Game three presented a great deal of adversity to the Patriots, but displayed their ability to claw back when trailing. Falling behind 17-11 the Patriots took a timely pause to regroup. Little did fans know that the timeout would provide, quite possibly, the most exciting stint of volleyball this season; the Patriots stormed back with the front trio of Cat Hall (Louisville, Ky.), Rebecca Just (Louisville, Ky.) and Shauna Stone leading the way with their crowd stirring kills. “This is our house and nobody comes in and takes a game from us without us laying it all out” says Shauna Stone. Before the Patriots put together their 13-5 run, long volleys were becoming an Achilles heel. “We have to stay organized and have better ball control in order to maintain poise on longer volleys” says McDannold. With two key kills coming from Rebecca Just to move the Patriots within three, senior defensive specialist Randa Murphy (Greensburg, Ky.) planted two service aces to guide the Patriots into striking distance, bringing Lourdes Hall to its feet. After losing set three the Patriots would not be detoured. Storming out to a 5-2 early lead in set four, the Patriots would step on the gas and never look back winning the set 25-16. Leading the way was the trio of Shauna Stone, Chelsea Wichman (Clayton, Ind.), and Abbey Sorrells (Elizabethtown, Ky.). “Shauna was an absolute beast tonight” says McDannold. “You have to feed your hot hitter” says setter Chelsea Wichman. “It’s easy to give a good set when a hitter, like Shauna, is able finish every kill.”
The Patriots will return to the confines of Lourdes Hall Tuesday, September 10 to face the Tigers of Georgetown College at 7 PM. Tuesday will be