Lady Bulldogs sweep city rival

Published 9:51 pm Tuesday, September 27, 2011

King’s Fork’s Natalie Montgomery swings against the blocking attempt by Lakeland’s Jackelyn Wood during Tuesday’s district match at King’s Fork. The Lady Bulldogs beat Lakeland for the second time this season, winning 25-13, 18-25, 25-18, 25-19.

It didn’t look like it until late in the third set of Tuesday night’s match in The Kennel, but King’s Fork’s girls volleyball team took control for good with two big rallies and went on to a season sweep over city rival Lakeland, winning 25-13, 18-25, 25-18, 25-19.

The Lady Bulldogs swept the Lady Cavaliers in Lakeland’s gym earlier this season, and King’s Fork rolled with no problem through the opening set of the second contest.

King’s Fork’s Courtney Brown set for 10 assists as the Lady Bulldogs beat visiting Lakeland Tuesday evening 25-13, 18-25, 25-18, 25-19.

Lakeland responded to take the second set almost as easily and the Lady Cavs led in the third set until the Lady Bulldogs found their swings at the net, practically as a unit, for the final set and a half of the match.

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Crystal Collins spiked down eight of her team-high 11 kills from late in the third set through the last set. Erin Banks, Natalie Montgomery and Jasmine Wertz joined in for key points.

As is the case in most Lady Bulldog matches, Jamika Townsend was the consistent all-around player leading her team. Townsend picked up her game along with her teammates as the momentum shifted to the Lady Bulldogs for good and finished with 20 assists, seven kills and four aces.

From a 7-all score in the opening set, the Lady Bulldogs ran off nine straight points, including five aces by Montgomery, and didn’t look back. Brenna Ginn led KF’s attack at the net early on with four kills and a block.

Lakeland suddenly claimed the momentum, winning the first four points of the next set.

King’s Fork moved back to an 8-8 score before a big Lady Cavalier run on Sarah Bowyer’s serve. Simone Russell scored a kill and a block on back-to-back points for a 15-9 Lakeland lead.

The Lady Bulldogs scored four straight points to cut Lakeland’s lead to 19-14. Lakeland answered with a 4-0 run and finished the set from there.

The Lady Bulldogs tallied a 15-3 margin in aces and held a hitting advantage at the net. For a long stretch of the match however, the Lady Cavalier defense more than held its own, and Lady Bulldog errors gave plenty of points away.

The Lady Cavs kept going to a 10-4 lead to start the third set. King’s Fork trimmed Lakeland’s lead to 13-11 before a rally switched the match for good.

King’s Fork’s setting and spiking found its mark for most of an 8-0 run for a 19-13 KF edge. Aquesha Knight and Megan Blythe scored kills on consecutive points to move KF ahead 15-13. Townsend set up Collins for two hard spikes to take the lead to 18-13.

Townsend had five assists, four aces and two kills, set up by KF’s other main setter Courtney Brown, in the third set.

Townsend and Brown, who finished with 10 assists, kept KF’s attack looking good the rest of the way.

Townsend and Collins worked for three kills in a 7-0 KF run early in the fourth set. Lakeland answered and got within a 14-13 KF lead but couldn’t get over the hump.

Wertz put down a kill for a sideout to keep Lakeland from tying the set. Montgomery got a Lady Bulldog kill for a sideout for a 20-17 KF lead. Banks, who didn’t play until the fourth set, added three kills including the clincher on match point.

Russell led Lakeland at the net with five kills, two blocks and two aces. Victoria Treat had five kills. Bowyer had eight assists.

Lakeland (1-10) hosts Western Branch on Thursday with the girls junior varsity match leading the tripleheader at 5 p.m.

King’s Fork (3-9, 3-8) faces a stretch of four straight matches on the road, first at Hickory on Thursday.