Lady Wave sweeps Elko, Spring Creek
Elko and Fallon battled intensely for four sets Saturday at the Elmo Dericco Gym, and although Fallon captured the Northern 3A match, the Lady Indians improved from the first time the two teams met one month ago.
The Lady Wave dropped the first set, 25-23 but swept the next three sets — 25-17, 25-22 and 25-23.
Fallon improves to 15-5 overall and 11-3 in the Northern 3A. The Wave hosted Fernley Tuesday night and travels to Dayton today for a 6 p.m. match.
Fallon controlled most of the first set, holding leads as many as three and four points. The Wave built a quick 3-1 lead, but Elko’s Lexi Baum blocked a shot that rolled out of bounds.
The Wave put together small scoring spurts aided by the play of their front row to include Faith Cornmesser’s blocking. Forced Fallon errors, though, allowed Elko to stay close by slicing the lead to 9-8.
Haylee Paladini’s returns kept the pressure on Elko, while the Lady Indians depended on Mollie Gallagher.
Midway through the set, Fallon led 19-13 before the visitors put together a slow comeback. Elko tied the set at 21 but didn’t take its first lead until it broke a tie for a 23-22 lead.
Fallon struggled during the next two points as Elko took the set.
Energized by its opening-set win, Elko played Fallon neck-and-neck with the scored tied three times. Fallon pulled away before Elko tied the set at 15 on Baum’s play.
After that, the set belonged to Fallon as the Wave outscored Elko 8-0 and recorded its 25th point on Paladini’s ace.
Both the third and fourth sets produced classic volleyball with neither team running away from the other. The set was tied twice before Fallon added several points for cushion.
Outside hitter Whitney Skabelund rattled Elko for 11 kills, while Zoey Swisher recorded 40 assists.
Down 20-16, Elko took advantage of several forced Fallon errors to tie the game at 20 and then again at 21.
Fallon strung together three straight kills, two from LeAnn Stands and one from Kayla Buckmaster to pull away. Two out of bounds returns enabled Fallon to score the final two points.
Elko was determined to take the fourth set to send the match into a fifth and final game.
Late in the set Elko tied Fallon on an ace, but Stands and Buckmaster, like they did in the previous set, went to work from the front line, and Paladini’s kill sealed the win.
In Friday’s match against Spring Creek, Fallon rolled to a three-set win, 25-13, 25-14 and 25-20.
Fallon began the first set somewhat cold but then warmed up quickly to outscore the Spartans 8-0 on a combination of Spring Creek errors and kills from Buckmaster and Cornmesser.
Cyrah Ochos had a highlight-film kill, just in time to stop Fallon’s run.
Aleisa Billips, Paladini and Stands dominated the front row, especially the outside, while server Lorynn Fagg recorded a pair of service aces to give Fallon a 20-9 lead.
Kara Kinsman put a damper on Fagg’s serving with a kill, but Fallon outscored Spring Creek to end the set.
Zoey Swisher calmly gave Fallon a 4-0 lead in the second set with her serving. Fallon errors gave the Spartans two points
Both teams played well over the next nine points with Fallon outshooting Spring Creek, 5-4. Fallon relied on Stands’ kills from her middle blocker position and had good serving from Journey Martin.
Spring Creek’s Kinsman had several nice returns.
Whitney Skabelund of Fallon, though, was tough from the outside with her pinpoint kills and presence.
Spring Creek, though, played well in the third set despite a 5-point loss.
Fallon grabbed the early lead and kept it until Spring Creek tied the set 7-7. Libero Breanna Southern gave the Spartans a needed spark with five service points that led to a 10-7 leads. Kinsman also had two kills during the run.
Fallon tied the set at 13 on Paladini’s kill and then returned the favor as Macie Anderson’s five service points regained the lead for the Wave.
During that span Paladini had two kills.
Each team had standout plays during the final 10 points. Stands had a kill as did Cornmesser, while the Spartans Kinsman and Ali Baker each had a block.