In a hard-fought victory match against their rivals, the Miami Trace Lady Panthers volleyball team defeated the Washington Lady Lions 3-2 Tuesday.
The first game started with the home team, Miami Trace, serving. The Lady Panthers rallied in the first game and started with a 25-17 win. The second game saw the Lady Lions serving and despite pushing hard, Miami Trace had a large lead heading into game three, winning just five points over their opponent, 25-20.
The third game started with a Miami Trace serve, which was quickly returned for a Washington point and then was added to with a second point. The Lady Panthers retaliated with a six-point streak, but not wanting to be outdone, the Lady Lions went for 10 unanswered points. At the end of the third game the Lions had taken their first of the match, 25-16. Flying on that momentum, they pushed hard into game four and took another victory, 25-13.
As both sides of the crowd grew louder, the teams took to the court for game five. They stayed neck and neck nearly the whole game. As it neared its finale, Miami Trace with 16 and the Lions with 15, a final serve brought the victory home for the Lady Panthers, 17-15, and set them over their opponent 3-2.
“I was proud of the fact that we lost the first two games and then we came back,” Washington Lady Lions head coach Ashley DeAtley said. “We came back really hard in the third game and fourth game. That last game though, we had a lead and we just relaxed a little bit. We weren’t attacking and those (Miami Trace) girls, I give kudos to them, because they were attacking and giving it everything they had. We got our serves down, our passing was on, but we were not attacking as much and that really got us down.
“We have seen Miami Trace a few times this summer and I say to my girls that it is exciting to watch them because they are loving the game. Its something that Doug (Mace) brought back to the program. He is doing wonders out here and you can see it in the girls faces, attitudes and their excitement every time they are on the court. Congratulations to Trace, but we are not done and we have to play them again and we are going to be ready.”
As the Panthers celebrated on the court, their head coach could be seen hugging and congratulating each girl on the hard-fought victory.
“We had momentum the first two games and they got the momentum in the third and fourth game,” Miami Trace Lady Panther head coach Doug Mace said following the game. “That is what we expected. We were kind of split with them last year and (Washington) Court House is a terrific program.
“For us to manage that (victory) there at the end is a big time victory for us. It doesn’t happen too often yet. Those little times like that are huge for us going into the future. I am proud of the way the girls stayed in there and played with a lot of heart. I am just really proud of all of them.”
Washington is at Clinton-Massie Thursday, while Miami Trace hosts Chillicothe, also on Thursday. J-v matches start at 5 p.m.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy