HAYS — The Starmount Rams volleyball team travelled to Hays to take on the North Wilkes Vikings in a Mountain Valley Athletic Conference battle last Thursday. The Lady Rams put together a strong performance to take a 3-1 win over the Vikings. Starmount took a win in the first set 25-20, lost the second set 21-25, won the third set 25-20 and won the fourth set 25-23.
It was a battle in all four sets for both teams. If the Rams found a rally, the Vikings were somehow able to pull out of the hole to tie the game or take the lead. From the opening set to the final play in the fourth set, things were a see-saw battle.
In the first set, Starmount came out strong and took an early 4-0 lead over the Vikings. Kayla Vanhoy and Elizabeth Cartwright had kills from the front line for the Rams. Abbey Johnson was able to knock down the fourth point of the night with an ace that hit an open area on North Wilkes’ side of the court. The Rams had a 4-0 lead before the home team was able to score its opening point.
North Wilkes knocked down a kill to cut Starmount’s lead, but the Rams were able to stop the rally as Karli Brown had a kill from the left side. Cambria Bowen put down two aces to continue Starmount’s rally, and Maddie Norman knocked down two kills to give Starmount a 14-3 lead.
Starmount seemed to be heading towards a blowout win in the first set, but the Vikings were not going to give up that easily. North Wilkes was able to put down kills and come up with scrappy play to pull the team within three points of the Rams. Starmount was able to hold off the Vikings’ attack, as Vanhoy knocked down a kill and Brown had a kill for the final point of the set. The Rams took a 25-10 win in the first set to take a 1-0 lead over North Wilkes.
North Wilkes was able to take the win in the second set, as the Rams struggled with communication. Balls hit the floor on Starmount’s side of the court, which gave the Vikings the points they needed to take a 25-21 win and tie the match 1-1.
Starmount was able to pull itself together after the loss and win the final two sets of the night. In the third set, the front row had kills while the back row was able to come up with digs that would make a highlight reel. During one play, Bowen had the first dig as she laid out on the court. The second hit was a miss hit by the Rams, but all was not lost. Bowen was still on the floor in a seated position when the ball came back to her. Bowen was able to send the ball over the net while on the floor. The pass confused the Vikings, and the ball hit the floor for a Starmount point.
The Rams were able to build their momentum as Johnson was able to put up perfect sets that were knocked down for the orange and blue. The Rams also had blocks on the front row, which in turn started a rally for Starmount. The third set saw Starmount take a 25-10 win.
In the final set of the night, the Vikings were determined to take the win, but the Rams were the stronger team. Starmount came out swinging and were able to take a 25-23 win. The final win gave Starmount a 3-1 conference win over the Vikings.
With the win, Starmount moves to 3-2 in the MVAC and 8-5 overall. The Rams travel to Ashe County on Thursday night and Forbush on Monday night.