Finishing second behind Blair Oaks in pool play Saturday in the Eldon Tournament wasn’t exactly a bad thing for the Boonville Lady Pirates volleyball team.
But then again the Lady Pirates weren’t exactly expecting to see the Falcons again in the tournament until the championship match. As it turned out, Boonville and Blair Oaks just so happened to meet up again in the title game with the Lady Falcons winning in two straight 25-19 and 25-18.
While finishing 4-2 in pool play, the Lady Pirates also opened the tournament with a split against Blair Oaks by winning the first set 25-17 and dropping the second 25-21. Then, in the next round, Boonville defeated Southern Boone of Ashland in two straight sets 25-13 and 25-18. Meanwhile, in the final round of pool play, the Lady Pirates again felt in the giving mood while splitting the best of two against Dixon while dropping the first set 25-22 and winning the second 25-16.
Boonville volleyball coach Susie Stone said Blair Oaks finished pool play with a record of 5-1.
Although the Lady Pirates felt they let one get away against Dixon, it was still good enough to advance Boonville on to tournament play, where they defeated both Eldon 25-20 and 25-6 and Rockwood Summit 27-25 and 25-22 to move on to the championship match.
Blair Oaks, meanwhile, had to beat Licking in three to advance on their side of the bracket and then beat Rolla in three to move on to the championship.
Stone said the matches the team won was the result of strong serve, which they took advantage of. “We won the battle of the ball control game on defense and serve-receive,” Stone said. “We took advantage of strong blocking at the net and worked together as a team to come through with large victories. The matches that we lost in pool play to Blair oaks and Dixon we struggled with winning the ball control battle on defense and serve-receive. Then, we did not terminate the ball at a high percentage at the net. We let Blair Oaks run an up tempo offense and did not control their outsides in pool play. When Dixon beat us one set, they moved better and took advantage of unforced errors we committed.”
In the semifinals against Rockwood Summit, Stone said the team worked well together and had solid blocking and serve-receive even though Rockwood scored a majority of their points from their strongest hitter.
“We did deter her from being able to defeat us by herself,” Stone said. “She was the strongest hitter at the tournament but with our blocking scheme we frustrated her when she did hit to the outside. And when she did get a hold of the ball, she hit right at our defense and we were able to pick up her hits. She did hurt us from the middle but we were able to execute in other phases of the game to come through with the win. This was a big win for us.”
In the championship match, Stone said Blair Oaks brought it and the girls played flat and were unable to execute efficiently. “We had some strong rallies but we did not win the battle of ball control,” Stone said. “We allowed them to go on several large point runs and we had to continue to come from behind, which we could not gain enough momentum to come back.”
Boonville senior Bailey Pfeiffer had 43 kills on 85 of 101 attack attempts along with 42 digs, 36 assists, 18 service points with seven aces and four blocks.
Junior Kristin Hoff, meanwhile, finished the tournament with 71 digs, 28 service points with 10 aces, seven kills on 17 of 19 attack attempts and two assists.
Mariah Root added 49 digs, 46 service points with 12 aces, one assist and 2 of 5 on attack attempts while Zoe Root had 54 assists, 17 service points with four aces, 12 digs and 4 of 4 on attack attempts, Kylie Hohensee with 16 service points with four aces, 15 digs, 11 assists, five kills on 12 of 18 attack attempts and two blocks, Anna Davis with 18 kills on 42 of 51 attack attempts with 12 digs, five assists and two blocks, Morgan Edwards with 18 blocks, 16 kills on 39 of 47 attack attempts with two digs, Taylor Fry with 16 blocks, 12 kills on 33 of 44 attack attempts with seven digs, Raven Stone with 11 kills on 27 of 32 attack attempts with eight blocks, four digs and four assists, Anna Terlep with 10 service points, eight digs and 4 of 5 on attack attempts, Sam Ivy with six blocks, five kills on 18 of 22 attack attempts with two digs, one assist and one service point and Daryl Fagan with six digs and two service points.