The Big Sandy Mountaineer -

Lady Pioneers swipe set from North Star


October 16, 2019

Big Sandy posted its most impressive set victory of the season Saturday before succumbing 3-1 against 6C top-drawer talent North Star.

The Lady Pioneers (1-6, 2-8) surprised the visiting Knights (5-1, 8-1) by taking the opening set in a 25-23 squeaker that gave the hometown crowd a thrill.

"For not having Amanda (Cline), one of our strongest players, I was very happy with our performance. To take a set off North Star, one of the best teams in our district, was very exciting," said Pioneers coach Brittany McKenney. "We played well defensively and only missed one serve the entire match. I'm proud of our girls and excited to see us improving every day."

Unfortunately, Big Sandy could not sustain the momentum and their guests from the Hi-Line came back to capture the remaining sets, 25-8, 25-19 and 25-12.

With the senior Cline and sophomore Anna Allderdice in Italy, the Lady Pioneers had a different look to their rotation.

"Kylee (Sternberg, a freshman) was our libero. Tavie (Wortman, a freshman) played middle back for Hope (Gasvoda, a senior)," McKenney said. "Seanna (Demontiney, a senior) played all the way around."

Senior Lainey Gregory led the team with eight of their total 14 assists on the night and added two of the Pioneers' four aces. Wortman had a match-high 25 digs with Big Sandy recording 73 for the match. Sophomore Amiya Griffith and freshman Laynee Ophus each had 3 blocks. Griffith, Gasvoda and senior Stacey Allderdice recorded 4 kills apiece.

Olivia King led North Star with 14 kills, 8 digs and 8 aces. Kenidee Wolery had a match-high 24 assists for the Knights.

First-year coach McKenney has continued to tinker with the Lady Pioneers' lineup and witness improvement from the beginning of the season.

"We've been running a 6-2 (rotation) and I'm liking it," she said.

Big Sandy returned to action after press time Monday with a trip to Hays to face the Hays-Lodgepole Thunderbirds, a district foe the Pioneers defeated in straight sets for their first league win Sept. 27 at home. After a week and a half layoff from match play, the Lady Pioneers are slated to close out the regular season with a two-match homestead Thursday, Oct. 24, against the Chester-Joplin-Inverness Hi-Line Hawks and Friday, Oct. 25, against the Highway 87 rivals Box Elder Bears.


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