LEADWOOD – The West County volleyball program faced the daunting task of rebuilding almost its entire varsity lineup this season.
Returning junior Kaytlen Hartley and senior captain Kylie Spivey are leading by example as the Lady Bulldogs rely on willing versatility throughout their roster.
Four different players spent considerable time at setter on Thursday, and West County topped Valley for the 16th consecutive meeting in a 25-18, 25-12, 25-16 home sweep.
Freshman Grace Lynch compiled 12 kills, 10 digs, five assists and two service aces, and knocked down six spikes during a dominant second game.
Hartley, primarily a setter last season, finished with five outside kills and 16 assists offensively while notching a team-high 17 digs and two aces along the back row.
West County (6-7-3, 1-0) secured match point in hustling fashion. After the Lady Vikings scrambled at the the net to neatly clear, Hartley alertly punched the ball upward on a similar move from her knees to create a clinching joust win by Addisyn Hedgcorth.
Isabella Skaggs notched her second solo block, then sent down a middle attack following two lunging digs by Hartley for a 14-10 lead in game three.
Valley (5-9, 0-1) made a temporary stand with defense, and stayed within 15-13 on an ace from senior Kenley Missey before the Lady Bulldogs pulled away.
Lynch drilled a kill off a single pass, and Hedgcorth found an open spot to trigger a 5-0 scoring run. A missed attack and errant clearing attempt by the Lady Vikings made it 23-14.
Skaggs totaled four kills, nine digs and two aces, and Hedgcorth provided 10 digs, nine receptions, four kills and two aces in the victory.
Valley hoped to build on some encouraging stretches from the previous night against South Iron, but struggled to generate consistent passes amid communication flaps.
Missey was the most prolific option for the visitors with 14 of their 20 total kills, mostly on mixed sets from freshman Ryleigh Maxwell, who contributed 13 assists and seven digs.
Carlie Loughary ended with 21 digs and 27 serve receptions at libero, and Hayden Jones picked up 13 digs with eight receptions.
Missey struck off a block to give Valley a 10-9 lead in game one. Jones later made a dazzling stop to her left, preceding a tipped kill by Kamryn Dickey.
But the Lady Bulldogs surged to a 19-13 cushion while utilizing two aces each from Hedgcorth and Lynch, whose strong kill pushed the difference to 23-17.
Skaggs capped a 10-3 start to game two for West County with an ace. Hartley denied several right-side attacks from Valley with digs, and Spivey stretched right to prolong another winning rally.
Lynch answered a stuff-block by Reagan Schrum with a cross-court kill at 22-9. West County yielded only four kills to the opposition in game two.
Valley regrouped with four kills from Missey in game three, including a dink shot when Emma Alley delivered an accurate pass as their club trailed 10-9.
A competitive rally shifted momentum back to West County. Lacey LaMarr sent a clever tap down the line to restore an 11-8 lead after previous attacks were stopped by Alley and Maxwell.
Ally Wigger bolstered the Lady Bulldogs with 12 digs. Spivey supplied 12 receptions and three kills while LaMarr dished out four assists.
Missey made seven digs and 11 receptions, and Alley equaled her two aces in defeat. Alivia Boyer chipped in three kills, and Haylee Moore had six digs.
Central 3, Ste. Genevieve 0
STE. GENEVIEVE – Central erased a five-point deficit late in game two, and polished off Ste. Genevieve 25-14, 26-24, 25-19 in the conference opener for both teams on Thursday night.
Blair Sitton spiked a team-high 10 kills, and Madison Dunn equaled Avery Johnson with seven each for the Lady Rebels. Sydney Miles finished with 23 assists, and Johnson brought up 21 digs.
Central (15-3, 1-0) turned a blistering start into a 14-1 lead after Miles served a 9-0 streak, then fought back as Ste. Genevieve (4-10, 0-1) marched toward squaring the match in game two.
Sophia Huck terminated from opposite sides to give the Dragons a 20-15 cushion, but a missed line call removed a potential kill from Emma Gegg moments later.
Johnson landed two kills and shared a double block with Kirsten Heineman within a resulting 6-0 push that propelled the visitors ahead 21-20 as Dunn served and set.
Ste. Genevieve retaliated with three straight points, capped by an outside spike from Gegg at 23-21, but Dunn landed a pivotal back-row kill to induce a key rotation.
Sitton returned to the lineup for an immediate tying block and go-ahead swing off a Dunn dig. But the Dragons turned an initial game point aside when Kailynn Harmon struck off a one-pass rally.
An ensuing missed serve at 24-24 gave another edge to Central, and senior Kelsie Politte surprised the opposition with an alert overhead clearing play after Johnson stopped a booming attack.
Mia Monges served three aces in game three, and saved a ball from the net as the Lady Rebels rattled off six straight points for an 8-3 lead.
Khloe Dischbein added a block that was lifted by the Dragons, then put down a middle swing at 15-8. A floating service ace by Miles restored a 19-12 separation, and her lunging dig led to another point when Ste. Genevieve cleared wide off a free ball.
Arcadia Valley 3, Jefferson 1
IRONTON – Arcadia Valley delivered clutch plays down the stretch of the last two games, and earned an exciting 25-17, 14-25, 25-23, 25-20 triumph over Jefferson on Thursday night.
Kayla Sumpter compiled 15 kills and 23 digs, and spiked a quick set from Taylor Lorenz off a blocking attempt on set point after the Lady Tigers trailed game three 18-15.
Paige Newstead-Adams sent a two-handed push down the line for a 22-22 tie, and Sumpter answered a Jefferson point off a pass from Cate Newstead-Adams to make it 23-23.
Game four was level at 16-16 before Arcadia Valley (7-8-1) surged ahead to stay. Jaydan Crites struck from the left side, and Skylar Romines tipped for a 22-18 edge.
Paige Newstead-Adams brought up match point from the left side, and finished with 10 kills and 22 digs. Crites provided nine kills plus seven digs.
Lorenz totaled 35 assists plus four kills, and Cate Newstead-Adams had seven kills with 26 digs in the victory. Romines executed three stuff-blocks and seven kills while serving seven points.
Potosi 3, North County 0
BONNE TERRE – Potosi opened the conference volleyball schedule with a 25-16, 25-9, 25-21 road sweep of North County on Thursday night.
Ava Robart hammered 18 kills, and made five digs for the Lady Trojans. Carsyn Yount compiled 36 assists and eight digs.
Potosi (13-2-1) also utilized eight kills and three blocks from Paige West.
Bismarck 3, Ellington 2
ELLINGTON, Mo. – Bismarck was two points away from being swept, then stormed back to claim the last three games and defeat Ellington 17-25, 18-25, 25-23, 25-17, 15-9 on Thursday.
Sophomore Halie Dickey starred for the Lady Indians with 23 kills and 15 digs, and Trinity Boyer fueled the net defense with eight blocks.
Bismarck (14-4-1) battled five sets for the third time this season, and utilized 20 assists and 12 digs from Morgan Randazzo.
Valle Catholic 3, Kingston 0
CADET – Addi Donze served three aces among 15 points, and contributed six digs and 10 receptions as Valle Catholic downed Kingston 25-22, 25-8, 25-19 to begin conference play on Thursday.
Ava Bauman also tallied three aces within 11 points, and spiked a team-high eight kills while adding nine assists and seven digs for the Lady Warriors.
Makayla Joggerst compiled seven kills, five digs and 11 receptions, and Abree Zipprich distributed 16 assists while making 11 digs and serving two aces.
Valle Catholic (12-4-1, 1-0) was bolstered by five kills from Brooklyn Weibrecht plus 12 digs and nine receptions from Ade Weiler. Lexie Rayoum chipped in two blocks, and Ada Bley made seven digs.