Sports

Killer hitters strike back

Falcon freshman Christie Robinson, backed up by junior Halie Mansfield and sophomore Carrie Anderson, gives it everything as she dives to the floor for the ball during a junior varsity matchup against Lakewood Thursday. South Whidbey won in three games. - Matt Johnson
Falcon freshman Christie Robinson, backed up by junior Halie Mansfield and sophomore Carrie Anderson, gives it everything as she dives to the floor for the ball during a junior varsity matchup against Lakewood Thursday. South Whidbey won in three games.
— image credit: Matt Johnson

It took a lot of time and even more sweat and bruises, but with two wins this week, South Whidbey volleyball is back in the playoff hunt.

After losing two matches last week, the Falcons were tenacious in pulling themselves to a 3-2 record this week with consecutive five-game wins over Granite Falls and Lakewood.

Neither opponent made winning come easy. Tuesday's victory was the Falcons' first in five matches and proved to be a rollercoaster ride for the traveling South Whidbey girls. Behind Brianna Hussey's 30 assists and nine kills, Jordan Tobler's 14 kills, and a combined kill total of 25 by Bronwyn Russell, Liz Norris and Jenny Murphy, the Falcons used a whole lot of in-your-face offense to outlast the Tigers. Team coach Tim Durbin said the win was important and marked the best game of the year -- to that point -- for Russell.

But the 5-5 junior hitter was not ready to rest on her laurels. Two nights later in a home matchup with Lakewood, Russell lead her team with 22 kills in a contest that never let South Whidbey see a true ray of hope until their match-ending 15-5 game.

Since neither team was able to hold serve for long against well-matched defenses, 47 Falcon kills in addition to Russell's were all the more important. Tobler and Norris were again strong at the net, and, according to Durbin, Nici Eaton had her best match of the year with an 11-kill total.

Now 3-2 in league and 7-4 overall, the Falcons have three regular-season matches remaining. They will play Sultan and Lynden Christian on the road next week before coming home to play the season closer on Oct. 29.

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