Harnett Central’s varsity volleyball team ended the regular season Tuesday with a 3-1 win at All American 3-A/4-A Conference and Harnett County rival Triton on the Hawks’ Senior Night by scores of 25-23, 24-26, 25-12 and 25-19.
“We have been talking about the last couple of games all season long,” said Harnett Central coach Ashley Gaines. “We had a little bit of a setback. (Senior setter) Carlie Love had some back problems and had to take a little bit of a break, but you can tell a huge difference when she’s out there on the court. They have a goal and every time they go out there on the court, they keep that in mind, and we want to finish in a certain position in the conference. And they work hard to show that.”
Triton coach Sarah Haney said the Hawks did not play to the level they’re capable of playing.
“There were some rallies in each set where we were competitive, but we definitely did not play as best as we could,” Haney said. “I don’t know what it is, but we just could not get the energy up tonight. We couldn’t rally it. We couldn’t do what we needed to be doing out there to put it down. We had some people struggling here and some people struggling there and just couldn’t put it together.”
Freshman Ava Faucette had a double-double, with 11 kills, one assist, one block, 12 digs and one ace on four service points, senior Carlie Love had four kills, 26 assists, one block, five digs and four aces on 11 service points and freshman Allie Williams had one kill, two assists, 13 digs and three aces on 15 service points to lead the Trojans (11-10, 10-4 AAC).
“(Williams) is the definition of a libero, vacuum cleaner, whatever you want to call her,” Gaines said. “She will go after every single ball and if she does not make a perfect pass on every single ball that she gets to, she’s not satisfied. I don’t know what to say about Ava. She has been one of our go-to hitters on offense. If we’re struggling somewhere, we know we can give Ava the ball outside and nine times out of 10, she’s going to put it away. She plays a whole lot bigger than a freshman out there.”
Savannah Bain had seven kills, one assist, eight digs and three aces on seven service points. Ansley Pyland had four kills, one block and one dig. Mya Lewis had two kills, four blocks, one dig and one ace. Victoria Langdon had one kill, one block and three digs. Cayleigh Hughes had one dig and held serve for three points. Haleigh Moss had two aces on five service points. Elle Gardner had one ace on three service points.
Junior Olivia Godwin had 10 kills, seven digs and one ace, freshman Sydney Bradham had one kill, 20 assists and six digs and held serve for seven points and senior Ava Blackman had one assist and 14 digs to lead the Hawks (11-10, 10-4).
Carleigh Hemby had seven kills, three digs and one ace on 12 service points. Chyna Massey had four kills, three blocks, four digs and three aces on five service points. Baylee Reagan had three kills, one assist and one dig and held serve for eight points. Aubrie Wise had four digs and one ace on three service points. Emma Stanley had three digs and two aces on six service points. Camryn Conway, Virginia Pope and Mary Charlotte Pope had two digs apiece.
With the score tied 22-22 in the first set, Central finished the set on a 3-1 run to take the set.
Triton held an early 13-3 lead in the second set before Central rallied with a 21-10 run to hold set point. But Triton finished the set with three unanswered points to tie the match.
Central opened the third set on a 17-6 run and held off a late rally to take the set.
With Triton holding a 17-16 lead in the fourth set, Central ended the match on a 9-2 run.
After the match, Triton honored lone senior Ava Blackman.
“Having the first season (as head coach) with one senior is a good thing for us as a team, because we come off into next year only losing one player,” Haney said. “But she’s a good player, so they’ll have to pick up the slack from her being gone.”
Harnett Central also won the junior varsity match, 2-1.
The All American 3-A/4-A Conference tournament begins on Monday.