Hempfield Area attempted to spoil the Greater Latrobe girls’ volleyball team’s senior night, but the Lady Wildcats wouldn’t have any of it.
Greater Latrobe jumped out to a big lead and the Lady Wildcats were able to hold off the hard-charging Lady Spartans, 3-2, during a WPIAL Class 4A, Section 3 match played Thursday at Greater Latrobe.
The win puts the playoff-bound Lady Wildcats at 9-3 in the section and 12-3 overall. Greater Latrobe is scheduled to compete in the Norwin tournament on Saturday, as the Lady Wildcats also await the WPIAL pairings meeting to see who they will meet in the opening round of next week’s playoffs.
Greater Latrobe previously defeated Hempfield Area, 3-1, on Sept. 28. On Thursday, Greater Latrobe rolled to a Game 1 victory, 25-15, and the Lady Wildcats were in control of the second game, though Hempfield Area kept things close. Greater Latrobe eventually prevailed with the 25-23 win and the 2-0 advantage.
That’s when the Lady Spartans started to rally. Hempfield Area tied the match with identical 25-19 scores, as it all came down to a deciding fifth set. Neither team gained more than a two-point advantage until late when Greater Latrobe stretched its lead to two, 14-12, on a Lily Fenton kill. The next time the Lady Wildcats had their opportunity, senior middle hitter Anna Rafferty closed out senior night with a spike for the winning points and the eventual 3-2 victory.
Fenton turned in an extraordinary effort with 14 kills to lead the way offensively, while also distributing 39 assists, 11 digs and two aces.
In addition to scoring the winning point, Rafferty produced 13 kills, five blocks and two aces. Elle Snyder had 11 kills and three aces, while Maya Krehlik posted nine kills. Emma Blair picked up six kills, while Paige Watson and Shallyn Shank combined for five kills.
Defensively, Bailey Watson led the charge with 17 digs, followed by Snyder’s 13 digs. Fenton tallied 11 and Shank was in double digits with 10 digs.
Greater Latrobe’s junior varsity team also played the maximum number of games, but suffered a 2-1 defeat. Scores were 16-25, 25-22 and 12-15.
Mikenna Marino led the JV offense with six kills. She was supported by Mia Myers, who had four, in addition to MacKenzie Myers, Jianna Kaczmarkiewicz, Jaycee Bodnar and Macie McHugh, who combined for seven kills.
Setter Ava Krehlik chalked up 17 assists and five aces, while Macie McHugh tallied 11 digs. Marino added seven, Krehlik had four and Mya McHugh two.