ROCKINGHAM — The Lady Raiders may have won all three sets in Wednesday night’s match against Anson, but it wasn’t easy.
The Richmond Senior volleyball team got off to a hot start in the first set, as two Savannah Lampley serves put the Lady Raiders up 2-0. A few minutes later, Brianna Baysek would register back-to-back kills — giving the home team a 7-4 lead.
Baysek was all over the place for Richmond (4-2-3) in the opening game. Back-to-back aces from the junior would give the Lady Raiders a five-point lead, before Anson began its comeback.
After finding themselves trailing 15-11, the Lady Bearcats ran off seven straight points — highlighted by a monster block — to put them ahead of Richmond 18-15.
The Lady Raiders got their chance to be on the attack after an Anson serve hit the net.
After Altman Griffin’s nicely placed kill brought the Lady Raiders within one (17-18), both teams began to trade blows. Anson retook control, going up 23-22, but two consecutive scores provided the home team with a 24-23 lead.
Anson would answer with two points of its own, but two kills from Griffin and Owen Bowers — and poor communication from Anson — resulted in Richmond taking the first set 27-25.
“The last time (we played them), we came out really sluggish and really slow. We lost the first game and then we had to rally back,” coach Shellie Wimpey said. “At least tonight, we won that first game and that kind of set the momentum.”
When Richmond and Anson met in Wadesboro last Thursday, the Bearcats scored the first four points of the first set and ended up taking a 26-24 decision. The Lady Raiders won the next three sets (25-18, 25-18, 25-8) of that match to take home the victory, but there were no sets left on the table Wednesday.
“We started out slow in some of the games. We can’t do that, because good teams are going to take that and take it all the way,” Wimpey added. “For us, we need to get on top of the game — on the score — and stay on top.”
Wimpey had to call a timeout early in the second set after seeing her team slip behind by eight points. Coming out of the timeout, another Lady Bearcat serve failed to clear the net — making the score 11-4.
And that’s when Richmond made its presence felt.
The Lady Raiders tied the game up at 11 — scoring seven unanswered points — tied it up again at 13 and then took control of the set. Anson called two timeouts in that span, but nothing could stop Richmond’s momentum.
“Volleyball is a game of momentum,” Wimpey explained. “If you get that momentum and you’re killing them, the other team gets down. So, we have to keep that momentum.”
Two aces and a Bowers kill opened up the third set, while Baysek’s sixth kill of the night closed the match. The Lady Raiders won the final game by a score of 25-17.
Wednesday’s win give Richmond its fourth straight win.
Griffin had a team-high 12 kills, Lampley led the way with nine digs, Baysek registered six aces, Bowers had one block and Mackenzie Webb finished with 26 assists.
“We have a really good momentum going,” Wimpey said. “The girls come ready to play every time. So that’s something that I’m really satisfied with.”
The Lady Raiders play at West Montgomery next Tuesday, Sept. 6 at 6 p.m.
JUNIOR VARSITY FALLS IN THREE
The junior varsity volleyball team grabbed a 25-23 win in the first set of its match over Anson, but could not duplicate its success — falling 2-1 to the Lady Bearcats. The Lady Raiders lost 25-20 and 15-8 in the last two sets.
Savannah Chappell registered four kills, while Taliah Wall had four aces.
Reach sports editor Leon Hargrove Jr. at 910-817-2673 and follow the sports section on Twitter @RCDailySports.
Richmond Senior’s Savannah Lampley gets ready to serve in the second set of the Lady Raiders’ 3-0 win over Anson on Wednesday evening. Lampley lead the team with nine digs.
Richmond Senior’s Brianna Baysek, middle, and Mackenzie Webb, right, get ready to hit the ball during the Lady Raiders’ match against Anson on Wednesday evening. The Lady Raiders won all three sets — defeating the Lady Bearcats for the second time in a week.