Panthers prevail over West
The Hibriten volleyball team posted its first victory in more than year with a 3-1 victory over county rival West Caldwell on Tuesday in Gamewell. The scores of the games were 25-11, 18-25, 25-21 and 25-12.
“This was a very emotional win for us,” said Hibriten head coach Kelly Bryant. “To get a win against Scott Greene (West head coach) is truly an honor. We are long time friends and I’ve always respected this program no matter what.”
In the opening set, Hibriten held a tight 8-5 advantage before going on an 8-2 run to take a commanding 16-7 lead. West never got any closer as the Panthers closed out the set at 25-11.
The Warriors fired back with a win in the second set. This set was back and forth right up until the very end. After Hibriten took a 17-15 lead, West Caldwell scored 10 of the last 11 points to even the match at one set apiece.
“The second set is the way we want to play all the time,” Greene said. “Everyone was communicating, moving around and we did a good job of distributing the ball. It was the all around type of game that we need to see.”
In the third set, Hibriten jumped all over West, scoring the first seven points en route to a 17-11 advantage. However, the Warriors refused to go quietly. West eventually got within two when it was down 22-20, but ultimately the Panthers were able to close out the set at 25-21.
The fourth set started out very similar to the third with Hibriten taking an early 9-1 lead. Only this time, the Panthers didn’t allow West to get back within six. Hibriten dominated the set and closed out the match for the victory.
“We dug ourselves into too big of a hole in the both the third and fourth sets,” Greene said. “We can’t get that far behind against any team. But I am proud of our effort and we know what we need to work on. Also give credit to Hibriten. They mixed things up really well and had us back on our heels.”
“I’m extremely proud of our girls tonight,” Bryant said. “I haven’t felt this way about a team in a long time. We have a lot of depth on this team and we’re still working some different combinations.”
Ally Soldati led the Panthers with 22 kills. Anna Frye added 14 service points and 15 assists, while Hannah Bryant recorded nine service points, five of which were aces.
For West, Erin Davis had five kills, seven blocks and eight service points. Kandy Adams had six assists and five digs, while Ashley Webb had six digs. Rubi Tobias added six service points for the Warriors.
In the junior varsity match, Hibriten claimed a 2-0 victory over West Caldwell. The scores of the games were 25-17 and 25-17.
West Caldwell returns to action today when it hosts its other county-rival in South Caldwell. The junior varsity match will start at 4:30 p.m. with the varsity to follow. Hibriten will host Wilkes Central on Thursday with the same start times.