By MICHAEL CHILDERS, CJ Correspondent
Heading into Tuesday evening’s match-up with the crosstown rival Somerset Lady Jumpers, veteran Pulaski County volleyball coach Teresa Combs wondered if her team would come out ready to play.
Combs’ pregame thoughts disappeared quickly, as the home standing Lady Maroons jumped out to an early lead over Somerset and never looked back, coming away with a 3-0 victory (25-9, 25-12, 25-9).
After numerous games and a slew of weekend tournaments, Combs was glad to see her club play the way they did on Tuesday evening at PC Gym.
“We are a tired bunch,” began Combs. “We have had four straight weeks of a lot of matches and a lot of weekend tournaments. I was afraid that we would come out a little flat tonight, but I think we came out with a lot of energy and took care of business.”
Paced by a pair of aces from junior Cece Roberts and multiple kills from senior Samantha Randolph, the Lady Maroons jumped out to an 8-1 lead in game one, which forced Somerset head coach Kelly Venters to take a timeout.
Venters did not have much to say following the three-set loss to their 47th District rival.
“Pulaski County is just the better team,” Venters stated. “We didn't play and we didn't pass.”
Pulaski County would lead by as much as 17 points at one time, as the Lady Maroons led by a score of 20-3. The Lady Jumpers went on a 5-0 spurt at the end of the game, but it was too little, too late, as Pulaski County took the opening game by a score of 25-9.
Game two was much of the same, as the Lady Maroons won the game by a score of 25-12. The game was close at one point, when Somerset trailed by four points at 8-4. After Somerset got within four points, Pulaski County went on a 5-0 run to widen the gap for good.
To begin game three, the Lady Maroons opened up with a monster 14-2 run over Somerset, which included a span of eight consecutive points. Pulaski County clinched the match with a 16-point, 25-9 victory over the Lady Maroons.
Combs tried a lot of different things in the win over Somerset, and she was happy with how they turned out.
“We ran three different line-ups different rotations tonight, so I'm really proud of how the girls responded in each and every one of them,” told the Lady Maroon coach. “I am glad for the win, because it's a district win and a rivalry win.”
Randolph had a monster night for the Lady Maroons, as the senior tallied a game-high 15 kills. Junior Jessica Ping chimed in with four kills, while junior Katie Dick had two kills and junior Ashtyn Lyons had one kill.
Pulaski County had 19 aces in the match, compared to Somerset’s two aces. Roberts had a game-high seven aces, while senior Rachel Daniels had six aces and freshman Alyssa Black, who also had 17 assists, tallied five aces. Ping also had an ace for the Lady Maroons.
For Somerset, senior Kaitlyn Moore, sophomore Haley Ellison, and sophomore Aubrey Kelley, all had a kill. Moore and Ellison also had an ace in the match for the Lady Jumpers.
Tuesday night’s win over the Lady Jumpers was Pulaski County’s second victory over their crosstown rival this year. In the first meeting at the Briar Patch, the Lady Maroons won, 3-0 (25-12, 25-18, 25-14).
Somerset, who fell to 3-12 overall and 0-4 in district play with the loss, will be back in action next Monday evening, when they will travel to Mt. Vernon to take on the Rockcastle County Lady Rockets.
With the victory, the Lady Maroons upped their overall record to 15-8 on the year, the second best record in the 12th Region. Pulaski County, who will host Scott County next Monday night at PC Gym, moved to a perfect 4-0 in 47th District action.
Follow Michael Childers on Twitter: @GetChili22