Fallon falters in fifth set
One point from a win, and the Fallon volleyball team let it slip through their fingers.
The Lady Wave were unable to close out Lowry in the fifth set and fell 25-15, 15-25, 25-18, 20-25, 14-16 on Tuesday at the Elmo Dericco Gym.
Fallon was poised to notch its second straight win after Ali Tedford’s tip put the Lady Wave up 14-12 in the final game. Lowry, though, countered with a kill from Rachel Sigurdson and a double-touch call on Fallon to tie the game.
The Buckaroos’ Jillian Albright smashed home a kill and Fallon’s Kyla Kincaid hit into the net to seal Lowry’s comeback.
“We just made those mental errors again,” Daum said. “It’s that athletic maturity. We competed, we went to five and we had opportunities. We just couldn’t close it.”
Coming off a comeback win of their own on Saturday at South Tahoe, Fallon appeared to have gained momentum from that win. The early season struggles with consistency, especially volleys into the net, gave Lowry life on Tuesday.
“Instead of keeping the ball in play, we are trying to force things that aren’t there,” Daum said. “It’s just playing not to make a mistake. They start playing not to lose. As we get better every week, those things will come.”
Fallon opened the match red-hot, rolling to a 25-14 win in the first set. Tedford, who had a team-high 27 assists, netted a service ace for an 11-4 lead and Megan McCormick pushed the lead to 19-10 on her serve.
Evan Matheson tallied a block and the final kill to give the Lady Wave a convincing opening-game win. Matheson, though, suffered a knee injury early in the third set and did not return.
Although Fallon appeared poised to sweep Lowry out of the gym, the Buckaroos settled in and dominated the second set. Juliana Velasco put Lowry up 17-10 on her serve and closed out the set after Ere Higbee put Lowry up 24-15.
“If we can find that spark with every single game, that’s what really drives our offense,” Lowry coach Megan Allen said.
The third set, though, saw the two clubs hold even throughout until McCormick stepped to the service line with Fallon trailing 15-12. She rattled off five aces on six serves and gave the Lady Wave an 18-16 lead. McCormick also added six kills.
Mary Scholz, who had a team-high 16 kills, neatly tipped a ball over and Izzy Thomas’ winner put Fallon up 20-17. Fallon closed out the set after Tedford served up an assist to Kincaid.
The Buckaroos, though, battled back in fourth set through a tightly contested game. Tied at 20, Lowry rattled off the next five points behind a tip from Higbee, an ace from Sierra Thiede and back-to-back kills from Velasco and Albright.
“These girls never say die,” Allen said. “It’s a reflection of their practices. Their support from each other on the court was huge.”
Fallon aims to get back to its winning ways with a home date at 6 p.m. today against Dayton. Lowry hosts South Tahoe on Friday.