When Wheelersburg needed some big points, the Lady Pirates turned to Jessica Blanton.
Blanton recorded 27 assists as second-seeded Wheelersburg won a Division III sectional semifinal match over Portsmouth 25-10, 25-12, 25-11 at home on Tuesday. Blanton also added 15 points and seven digs in the win.
Throughout the game, the Lady Pirates were hard at work, trying to better their passing and moving for future tournament games. Wheelersburg coach Carol Bialkowski said the squad did a solid job of pulling together as a team.
“We were really trying to focus on our offense and getting the ball back to our hitters,” Bialkowski said. “We were really working hard on our movement, our flow on our court and moving on the court to make a good pass. That really is playing as a team and working together.”
Serving was also key for Wheelersburg. Blanton had some big serves in the first game and the team put together some big runs behind the line in the second and third games.
Ali Conley had seven points, 10 kills and seven blocks and Tori Williams and Brittany Meenach combined for 13 points. Amy O'Brien had six points and Taylan Floyd contributed five kills.
For Portsmouth, Brittany Stanley finished her career with 25 spikes, seven kills and nine points. Katie Click added nine points and Maggee Colley had 50 assists and five points.
“My seniors are Brittany Stanley and Katie Click. They've shown tremendous improvement over the years,” said Portsmouth coach Shay Pennington. “Both of those girls have very good heads on their shoulders.”
Emily Hopkins had 11 spikes and three kills for the Trojans.
Wheelersburg will host the winner of West Union and Peebles on Saturday at 6 p.m.