NEW ALBANY - New Albany won a hotly-contested match in Division 1-4A volleyball on Thursday over Ripley by a 3-0 verdict. The match was an extremely close contest which the Lady Bulldogs edged out narrow set wins of 25-22, 25-23 and 25-16.
The win on Thursday avenged an earlier loss at Ripley in mid-September for the Lady Bulldogs by a 3-2 score.
"I felt like we had more focus and more fight in us tonight," New Albany coach Ashley Connolly said. "Being senior night, of course the seniors are going to tend to show out a little bit more and the girls just had their backs.
"In all honesty I felt like they were mad at what happened when we over at Ripley and I felt like it made us come out and fight harder."
New Albany trailed only once in the first set as they pulled out the 25-22 win. There were four ties during the set and the largest lead was at five points as the Lady Bulldogs led 24-19 late before Vakeria Jett's kill gave New Albany the winning point.
Jett had two kills and two service aces to lead the Lady Bulldogs while Alexis Mirfield had three kills.
The second set was an even closer back-and-forth event as the teams tied seven times and there were three lead changes with the largest point differential at four, which Ripley held at two different occasions. New Albany was able to squeak out the 25-23 win.
Jett was again a major contributor with two aces and one kill. Camryn Rainwater added a kill and ace for the Lady Bulldogs.
New Albany scored the first four points in the third and final set behind setter Masey Kate Adams serving and never trailed in the 25-16 winner.
All three Lady Bulldog seniors, Endya Worship, Jett and Mirfield had kills in the set while Adams chipped in two, including the game and match winner on a soft kill at the net.
"It was all of them (New Albany) tonight that contributed, Masey had an excellent defensive game, she was spreading the ball a lot," Connolly said. "Vakeria's blocking right there at the end, that in itself will turn an entire game around and I felt like she did an excellent job on that.
"Hannah (Hughes) was playing her position and getting balls up and we didn't have as many missed serves as we normally do. That is a really big contributing factor, so I just felt like they all just played a really great game."
Jett had four blocks in the final set alone and finished the night with six total. She also had four kills and four aces. Mirfield connected on four kills and Adams had three.
Adams led the Bulldogs with 13 assists and 24 digs. Hughes was also instrumental in the digs department with 20.
The division has quite a log-jam at the top with New Albany on top at 4-1. Corinth is next at 3-1-1 followed by Ripley at 4-2.