45th District Volleyball Tournament: Lincoln blanks Garrard to advance to finals

Published 1:16 pm Friday, October 12, 2018

STANFORD — Of course, the ultimate goal of every volleyball team in the state is to make it to the KHSAA state championships. But to get there, a team first has to win its first match in the district tourney.

That was the quest for both Lincoln County and Garrard County Monday night.

The two teams squared off in the nightcap of the opening round of the 45th District Volleyball Tournament in Lincoln’s J.C. Eddleman Gymnasium, and it was the host Lady Patriots advancing on to the finals with a commanding performance over the Lady Lions, 3-0.

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Lincoln, which is hosting the tournament due to Garrard’s gym undergoing repairs, got right down to business in the district opener, taking the match with scores of 25-10, 25-11 and 25-13 for its 19th sweep of the season.

Lady Pat coach Samantha Torres said her team, which now stands at 20-7 overall, was focused and very determined in the opening game of the tournament.

“We came in knowing it was going to be a tough game so we came in prepared,” she said. “We went in and got some reps in this morning and so we were really ready. We were mentally prepared and that’s a big thing that we’ve been focusing on, is staying mentally tough.”

Lincoln did fall behind early in game one of the best of five match, as Garrard (9-20) opened up a 7-3 lead. The Lady Patriots fought back to deadlock the game at 8-all then closed on a 17-2 scoring run to take the game 25-10.

Lincoln never trailed in either game two or game three. The Lady Patriots opened on a 7-0 run in game two and a 9-0 run in game three en route to 25-11 and 25-13 wins to advance to the district final.

Savanna Smith led the Lincoln attack at the net with nine kills and seven blocks in the win. Peyton Griffin knocked down six kills and also had three assists and three aces. Taryn Johnson added four kills and got two aces. Kasie Mullins had one block.

Jasmine Whited added 17 assists and finished with four aces.

“It was a really good match,” Torres said of Lincoln’s play. “We had several big saves, a lot of hustle plays, several dodge plays where they dodged it and it went right out of bounds. A lot of those help build momentum, which helps keep you in the lead.”