By Jeremy McDonald
MONMOUTH, Ore.– For the final time this season the Central Volleyball team took to their home court when they hosted North Salem.
Both squads were in a three-way tie for fifth-place in the Mid-Willamette Conference at 3-6, sharing the spot with South Albany as the Vikings and Panthers split the first two sets of Central’s 25-21, 23-25, 25-18, 25-13 win Tuesday evening.
The first two sets were close. Little advantages by both squads had kept the sets within arm’s reach. There was a sense that they could’ve done better than they showed in that second set as they opened the third set with an 8-3 advantage on North Salem.
“We knew that we could compete better. We didn’t play to our ability in that second set, then in that third set we were like ‘alright let’s pick it up. Let’s play what we know and what we actually can do’,” Katie Farley said. “Just keeping energy on the court, cheering everyone on and just picking up momentum and keeping it. This is a game of momentum.”
The Viks rallied, getting the third set deficit that was once at 12-6, down to 17-14 before a Panther timeout. Central closed out the set on another 8-3 advantage to take a two sets to one lead on North Salem.
“It’s something we aren’t very…we tend to get down after we take a loss set, so it was good to come back and take that third set,” Stella Lopez said of the set win.
Momentum stayed on the Panthers side going into the fourth set. Central opened with a 9-6 lead in the final set of the match before using the energy and momentum from the previous set to score 16 of the matches final 23 points for their sixth-win of the season.
The Panthers start their six-game road trip to end the regular season Thursday when they head to Corvallis to play the Spartans before playing two games Tuesday at South Albany High School.
Photos By Jeremy McDonald