South Webster volleyball gets first win

On Thursday evening, South Webster hosted Portsmouth West in a volleyball match between the Jeeps and Senators.

For South Webster, the Jeeps were looking for their first win of the season. South Webster entered the game with a 0-7 record.

The Jeeps were able to put together a great match and fought for a win in three sets. South Webster won 25-17, 25-20 and 26-24 over West.

With the win, the Jeeps and their head coach Darcee Claxon are hoping South Webster can resurrect their season. “I think just to win, it’s like the monkey is off our backs now,” Claxon told the Daily Times. “We’ve been very inconsistent this season and trying to find leadership and consistency, it’s been difficult.”

Early on in the first set, the two teams fought for control of the match. With both schools tied at 4-4, the Senators went on a 5-0 run to take a 9-4 lead. The two teams traded points back and forth through much of the first set, until South Webster pulled away late.

Trailing 14-9 in the first set, the Jeeps rattled off eight straight points to put South Webster ahead 17-14. The scoring effort was a part of an 11-1 run for the Jeeps, and West called timeout with a 20-15 deficit trying to regain composure and fight for the first set.

The run for South Webster was huge for the Jeeps, who were sharing the ball exceptionally well. “I think that consistently all three sets we passed the ball well,” Claxon said. “Hannah [Spergin], Avery [Zempter], Olivia [Messer], I just think their passing was on point tonight.”

The Senators were able to add another couple points, but came up short in the first set of the match after an attack error gave South Webster the 25-17 set victory.

In the second set, it was all about runs once again for both teams. After the first timeout of the set, West trailed 14-11, but came out firing to tie things up at 14 even.

From there, South Webster went on a 7-1 run to extend their lead to 21-15 before West took another timeout. The Senators kept pushing to try and fend off the Jeeps, but ultimately their efforts fell short when another attack error gave South Webster a 25-20 victory in the second set of the match.

Trailing in the match 2-0, it was time for West to step up if they wanted to have a shot at winning. Every time the Senators made a move, though, the Jeeps were right there to counter.

West held on to a 6-3 lead early in the third set, but South Webster tied things up quickly. After that, both teams battled back and forth before the Jeeps got out to a 16-12 lead at the first timeout.

The Senators jumped out to a 5-1 run before Claxon took a timeout with the third set tied at 17. After the Jeeps came back on the court, they went on a 4-1 run of their own to get back on top at 21-18 before West took another timeout.

It looked as though the timeout was all for nothing, as South Webster scored the first two points out of the break. But West wasn’t finished, and used a 4-0 streak to pull within one. South Webster was in front 23-22, and the Jeeps wanted to talk it all over.

With a slim lead, Claxon’s crew hit the floor looking to close things out. The Jeeps added another point to go up 24-22, but West scored the next two to tie the set up at 24.

The score was tied after the Senators evened things up, but South Webster was able to pull away and score the next two points to win the overall match. The Jeeps got the win on a Liz Rockwell service ace.

South Webster is hoping this victory can help them gain some momentum with plenty of matches remaining on the schedule. “I told the girls the other day, “we can’t undo what’s done. We’re 0-7. You can’t undo that.” I told them “tonight is the night that we can start over, and start a new season and build from there.” I’m really hoping that’s the direction we’re going to be heading in,” Claxon said.

If the momentum is hard to come by, Claxon at least hopes her girls will receive a boost in their confidence after their first win of the season.

“I think it does a lot because they have been in several matches where it’s 22 to 20 something, 23 to something, and we cannot finish,” Claxon said. “So, I think maybe winning that first [set], and then even then the second, allowed them to play a little freer and a little less afraid.”

For the first time all season, the Jeeps were able to end the match on top in the final score. “They were able to finish, which they have not been able to do this year,” Claxon said. “So, hopefully we’re moving in the right direction.”

South Webster will play Northwest at home on Sept. 12 at 5:30 p.m. Portsmouth West will welcome North Adams on Sept. 11, also at 5:30 p.m.

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Haley Mason skies high to try and tip the ball over the net for South Webster. Mason skies high to try and tip the ball over the net for South Webster. Ben Spicer | Daily Times

Portsmouth West players celebrate a point in their game against South Webster. West players celebrate a point in their game against South Webster. Ben Spicer | Daily Times

By Benjamin Spicer

[email protected]

Reach Benjamin Spicer at (502)264-7318 or on Twitter @BSpicerPDT

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