SHELLEY – The Shelley Lady Russets welcomed the Blackfoot Lady Broncos to town Tuesday night as the two teams continue to work toward a seeding position in the upcoming High Country Conference/District 6 volleyball tournament.
Before a crowd that was decidedly pro-Broncos, the two teams went at it in a very spirited match.
The first set was pretty much in the Russets’ favor, as they went to the lead early on and then rode the outside hitter’s kills (Alexis Leckington and Caydence Taylor) who both hit winner after winner from the outset.
As the Russets built on the lead, they slowly drew away from the Broncos and took the first set by a score of 25-13 and set the tone for the rest of the match.
The second set was much closer score-wise, with the Lady Broncos winning by the score of 25-22, but the Russets did lead a good portion of the set and gave up the lead late when the Broncos put forth a charge.
The Russets continued to get good play from Leckington and the student section was hollering out “D-1, D-1” every time Leckington make a point winning shot or went back to serve, obviously a notice that Leckington has received some looks from Division I teams trying to entice her to sign with a top level program when she graduates next year.
Set number three went to the Russets, but it was a battle for most of the set and they eventually prevailed by the final of 25-20.
The Broncos got some good play from Hadley Humpherys who hit a series of kills and made several blocks as well. There were other contributors, but Humpherys stood out with her front line play.
The fourth set saw a renewed charge from the Broncos who led for a good portion of the set and actually led 23-21 at one point.
That is when the Russets stepped up their play and, with Kaylie Peebles serving, won the final four points of the set to claim the win by a 25-23 score.
Overall, the Russets went 25-13, 22-25, 25-20 and 25-23 to claim the match three sets to one.
The win was vital for the Russets’ charge at the end of the season as they look for a decent seeding for the upcoming District 6 tournament which begins Tuesday. Nobody wants to be in the number five spot as that team will start off with the undefeated Bonneville Bees in the first round and that would not be an enviable position. The number two seed in the tournament receives a first round bye and will play the winner from the number three and four seeds.
The tournament concludes today, with the champion receiving a berth in the state tournament and the second place finisher receives a chance at the state play-in game which is scheduled for Saturday.