Lady Trojans win set, but Grafton claims volleyball match
Grafton’s Lady Clippers have had New Kent Lady Trojans’ number, not losing to the hosts since 2012. And despite taking a set from the invaders, New Kent was unable to snap that streak.
New Kent fell 18-25, 22-25, 25-22, 16-25 in four sets to Grafton, who capitalized off 20 service errors committed by the Lady Trojans.
After first set jitters, the Lady Clippers broke away in the opening set to put the hosts in a hole early. IN the second set, New Kent looked like it had the advantage until a tip by Grafton’s Becca Hallingstand swung momentum. Her ace followed that sparked a 4-0 run that gave the visitors a one-point lead in the set (19-18). Hallingstand continued to decimate New Kent, as her spike broke a tie at 22. New Kent Lady Trojan Haley Baker dove to keep a ball in play, but a misplay by teammates allowed Grafton to claim the second set.
The hosts rose to the occasion in the third set. Leading 23-21, the New Kent duo of Lexie Butler and Lindsey Johnson combined for a block that provided a much-needed boost for the hosts and a win in the third set.
However, Grafton returned to its dominant form that has led them to a 19-1 record on the year. The Lady Clippers jumped out early in the fourth frame and had no trouble dispensing the hosts to win the match.
New Kent head coach Cynthia Burnett took away the positives her team learned in the contest.
“The hitting was good tonight and the first three games we played well,” she said. “We had long rallies and we came out on top, especially against a great team like Grafton.
“I did tell them I was disappointed in our serving, but overall I was excited because come playoffs, it’s going to be hard to find competition like this,” Burnett added. “This game tonight was a real confidence boost for our team.”
New Kent falls to 11-10 on the year.