NEW ALBANY - The host Lady Bulldogs dropped the opening set to Corinth on Thursday night, but rallied to win three-straight afterward and regain a share of first place in Division 1-4A volleyball with their 3-1 victory.

New Albany claimed the win with scores of 24-26, 25-16, 25-19, 25-23.

Janae Shackleford broke a 23-all tie in the final set with a kill and Greta Blakemore capped the night with the decisive kill to hand New Albany the set and the match.

“The key to tonight was we did not give up, when we played there (Corinth), we stopped being aggressive and I told them tonight that we’ve got to go out swinging or not go out at all and we won,” New Albany coach Ashley Connolly said. "It was the outsides, it was the middles getting their kills when they needed. It was Greta coming through whenever we needed her. 

“Rosa (Rosalee Roberts) and Mirfield (Alexis) stood out to me tonight big time, it had not been for those two, we would have been in a bind. Maggie (Moore) and Hannah (Hughes) did their job, Masey (Adams) did a great job of spreading the offense because it was everybody and that was very smart on Masey's part of spreading the ball around."

Corinth won the opening set after trailing 24-20, by finishing on a 6-0 run for the 26-24 winner.

New Albany came back strong in the second set as they trailed only once at 1-0 and opened up a seven-point lead at one time. Corinth pulled to within three, but the Lady Bulldogs finished on a 6-0 run of their own to tie the match at 1-1 with the 25-16.

Blakemore had three service aces sandwiched between two kills by Roberts for the last five points.

"I think we just really finished those three sets, the last time we played at Corinth, we didn't finish, we'd start strong and kinda dwindle in the middle and not focus," Blakemore said. "I feel like we really locked down especially in that fourth set and pulled it out."

New Albany again only trailed briefly in the third set as they won 25-19 and in the fourth set. New Albany came back from a 20-17 deficit to win 25-23.

“Our keys to the game were to keep it out of Maggie’s (Moore) hands and to give ourselves some offensive options against their blockers and I thought at times, we did just that and during those times we were successful, but when we went away from it, things just never went our way,” Corinth coach Kelly Wright said.

Blakemore led New Albany with 17 kills while Roberts was also in double figures with 10. Blakemore and Roberts also led the Lady Bulldogs with three service aces apiece. Shackleford had nine kills and Mirfield added seven. 

Setter Masey Adams recorded 45 assists as she had great ball distribution the entire match.

Roberts had 24 digs while Moore added 20 and Adams chipped in 16. 

New Albanyhad four players with two blocks apiece - Blakemore, Mirfield, Shackleford and Vakeria Jett.

New Albany improved to 6-1 in Division 1-4A while Corinth is 5-1.

New Albany 2, Corinth 0 (JV)

New Albany won the JV match with Corinth by a 2-0 final. The Lady Bulldogs won the first set 25-21 while securing the sweep with a 25-14 decision in the second set.

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