Clover swept South Pointe 3-0 in volleyball action Tuesday at South Pointe High School, winning 25-23, 25-18, 25-12. Despite the sweep and sometimes lopsided scores, the game was much more competitive than the final results indicated.
The Lady Eagles jumped ahead each game, only to see South Point storm back to make it competitive. Game one went down to the wire, and set the tone for the final two games.
Lindsay Provine started serving for Clover in the opening game. Behind an ace and a great tip by forward Stephanie Dover, the Lady Eagles managed to jump ahead 4-0.
A quick side out and three consecutive points by Clover's Jaclin Poole put the Lady Stallions behind the eight ball with a 7-2 deficit. South Point recovered, and had two mini-runs to put itself in position to take game one.
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Katie McCoy served four consecutive points to give South Point the quick lead before Clover answered with six straight GeorgeAnna Westmoreland kills to put Clover in control 22-18.
Trailing by four, Lady Stallions center Kayla Pengelski reversed the momentum once again. Despite two timeouts by Clover head coach Shea Hall, Pengelski gave South Pointe the lead at 23-22 before finally serving the ball out of bounds.
The Lady Eagles responded with a side out, and Casey Killian scored the final two points for the game-one victory. The two-point margin was the closest of the three games, and provided the confidence and momentum for Clover to take command of the game.
Clover jumped ahead in game two 7-2, before falling behind 11-9 when Westmoreland reeled off six straight points. Defensively, South Point's only points the remainder of the way came on side outs, as Clover returned nearly everything that the Lady Stallions hit at them.
The Lady Eagles dominated the remainder of the second game, then cruised through game three for the sweep. With the lead, Clover coach Shea Hall substituted some of her younger players to get them experience she hopes will prove valuable down the road.
"We were able to play a lot of girls tonight," said Hall. "I put one girl in who had never played the position before, but has good team attitude and was willing to do anything to get in the game. Overall, tonight was a nice win for us. Winning that first game really gave us the confidence to step up and take control the rest of the way."
In the third year of the program, South Pointe continues to make progress.
"Most of the mistakes we made out there were our own fault," South Pointe coach Mike Deyton said. "The good news is those mistakes are correctable. We are improving and getting closer to being competitive; we'll just have to keep working hard to get better."