PHS Netters Send Seniors Out With 'W'
BY CHARLIE BERGMANN
Special to The Pilot
The Pinecrest volleyball team reached the 20-win plateau with a 25-12, 25-18 and 25-16 win over Richmond Senior before a festive Senior Night crowd on Tuesday.
The Patriots then completed regular season play with a 25-12, 25-22 and 25-19 sweep at Hoke County on Wednesday to improve to 8-2 in the Southeastern Conference and 21-5 overall. As the second place team behind Scotland County, the Pats are scheduled to meet the winner of Monday's first round conference tournament match between the third and fourth place teams at home on Tuesday.
"It was just fun to play on Senior Night," senior Ashleigh McKenzie said of an evening that was also designated Breast Cancer Awareness and Middle School Night. "We had to play hard. It's our last year so we want to go out with a bang."
Already posting the most wins for a Patriot squad since the 2004 team finished 27-4 is no small accomplishment. In addition to McKenzie, Addy George, Uniqwa Morrison, Sarah Harrison and Addie Nelson were honored before their final regular season matches.
The first game got under way with a service ace by Morrison. The outside hitter was also sharp on the attack, getting three early kills. Three aces in a row by the jump-serving George made it 22-11 before sophomore Janea Williams sent one straight down to the floor on the Raider side to end it.
Sophomore Megan Thomas spent a long time at the service line as the Patriots jumped out to a 9-0 lead in the second game. Fellow sophomore Felicia Painter had back-to-back wins at the net during the spree. Harrison served for two points and George and Morrison continued to hit winners as the home team maintained its big lead.
Keegan Lynch had a six-point service run in the third set that ended on an assist by McKenzie for an emphatic kill by Williams.
"We've had some tremendous talent this year with our seniors," Patriot coach Barbara Foxx said. "Addy George is hitting the ball real well right now. She's a team player and her all-around game is coming at the right time.
"Ashleigh McKenzie has been hustling all year for us, digging balls up. Uniqwa hit the ball well for us tonight. Sarah Harrison served well and had some good passes."
George finished with 13 kills, and Morrison and Williams had seven each. McKenzie and Callie Boone had seven assists apiece. Richmond dropped to 3-6 and 6-7 with the loss.
In the match at Hoke, George had 18 kills, four digs and eight service points. Thomas contributed 17 assists.
The Patriot jayvee team improved to 20-3 with a win over the Raiders on Tuesday. Jayvee and assistant coach Ashley Craven was a member of the 2004 Patriot team that lost in the East Regional final.
Contact Charlie Bergmann at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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