Hornettes Begin Season Against Lady Rockets

Jenna Harris goes up and looks to tip the ball over the Okawville defenders during the Hornettes three game win over the Lady Rockets.

After starting out the season with a win over Okawville, the Nashville Hornettes volleyball team dropped two of their three games at the SIRR Conference Tournament, held in Herrin on October 26. Nashville’s record stands at 2-2 on the season. The Hornettes are back in action on Thursday, at home against Central. The Freshmen match will begin at 5:30.

The Hornettes began the season with a three game win over Washington County rival Okawville on August 24. The Hornettes dropped the first game 25-22 before taking the final two games 25-17 and 25-19.

Nashville rushed out to an early lead in the first game, before Okawville came back to take the lead. Okawville would lead the majority of the game, and would build a lead of five at one point in the first game. Trailing 16-11, Nashville would storm back to take a 21-18 lead in the late going. But Okawville would score seven of the final eight points in the game to take the win.

In game two the Hornettes would never trail. Nashville would score the first five points of the game, and would hold the Lady Rockets at bay from there. Three points was the closest Okawville would come the rest of the way, as Nashville would pick up a 25-17 victory to force a deciding third game.

After the match, Coach Josh Konkel talked about the early lead in game two. “That’s a great pick me up. Mackenzie can go back there and get five nice points for us with help from the team, and that just sets the tone. Then they are crawling from behind the whole game and that helped out.”

In game three, both teams came out strong with neither team gaining a significant advantage in the early going. After Okawville closed the game within one point at 14-13, the Hornettes would go on an 11-6 run to end the game and pick up the match win.

Konkel talked about what he told the team before the final stretch run of game three. “Just stay aggressive. Don’t start tipping and let them take it. Stay aggressive and take it at them, so that they weren’t able to attack us like there big hitters can.”

Jenna Harris led the way in the win with six kills. Mackenzie McFeron finished with five kills, four digs and one ace for the Hornettes. Abby Kempfer also finished with five kills in the win, and added two blocks as well. Paige Kasten finished with a dig and two aces for the Hornettes. Vanessa Wyciskalla finished with three kills, while Abby Wesselmann finished with six digs. Bailey Melton finished with a block and a kill.

The Hornettes then began play in the SIRR Conference Tournament with a matchup against Harrisburg on August 26. Nashville suffered their first loss of the season in two straight games against Harrisburg. Harrisburg took game one 26-24 before taking game two 25-17.

Harris led Nashville with two kills, while Melton led Nashville with three blocks. McFeron finished with two blocks in the loss, while Kasten led the Hornettes with six assists. Sydney Brinkmann finished with two digs, while Wesselmann finished with five service points, and four aces for Nashville.

Nashville suffered their second straight loss as they dropped a three game match to Sparta. All three games were close, but Sparta was able to pull out the win. Sparta grabbed game one 25-23, but the Hornettes came back to take game two 26-24. It would set up a deciding game three, with Sparta just pulling out the win 15-13.

McFeron filled up the stat sheet, as she finished with six kills, nine service points, and 24 digs. Kempfer finished with five kills and two blocks in the loss, while Kasten led the team with 18 assists.

The Hornettes picked up their only win of the tournament with a two game win over Murphysboro. Nashville took the first game 25-22, before taking a closely contested game two 26-24.

Kasten led Nashville with 17 assists in the win, and six service points, three of which were aces. Kempfer led Nashville with six kills and four blocks in the win.

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