At Jesse George Gym - Cold Springs:
West Point 25 25
Cold Springs 21 18
West Point (5-0) wins match 2-0
Time of match: 0:43
Sumiton Christian 25 17 3
West Point 20 25 15
West Point (6-0) wins match 2-1
Time of match: 0:53
Sumiton Christian 18 20
Cold Springs 25 25
Cold Springs (8-4) wins match 2-0
Time of match: 0:42
FLASH NOTES: Victory was well earned by undefeated West Point and No. 10 ranked Cold Springs Thursday evening.
The matches were close encounters with West Point starting the agenda by sweeping Cold Springs 25-21 and 25-18.
West Point was able to gain a comfortable lead in the first set, going up 14-9 on a kill from Mackenzie Carter. But Cold Springs brought back a challenge and trailed 15-14 when Emi Harbison converted an ace.
A kill and two consecutive service points by Molly Pendley pushed West Point to a 21-16 advantage. Josie Huckaby got a kill that made it 23-19, a service point from Gracie Thompson raised the lead to 24-19. Following a service break with Kylon Hamby scoring on a volley and a kill by Harbison, West Point finished the first set with a kill by Carter and held the early advantage in the match.
Thompson nailed a couple of serves in the second game, boosting the lead for West Point to 11-6. Sarah Chapman followed with four straight service points, one being an ace and it was a 20-11 lead for the visitors.
Cold Springs fought hard to stay in contention, but at the end, a kill from Carter and a service point by Lexi Shadix completed the West Point sweep of its county foe.
Sumiton Christian took to the floor to face West Point and shook off a 14-9 deficit. Leading the comeback for Sumiton was Lexi Jackson at the net and Anna Calloway from the service line. Calloway fired off seven straight service points to send the Lady Eagles in front as West Point was unable to recover, dropping the first set 25-20.
An early 3-0 deficit in game two was quickly erased by the Lady Warriors, thanks to the serving of Celena Clark. Clark would produce 12 straight service points, raising the advantage to 13-3 before Sumiton broke her serve.
Sumiton made a game of it, closing to 15-13 when Regina Jones' Lady Warriors regrouped and used quality serves by Thompson and kills from Huckaby to send the match into a tiebreaker.
In the finale, Clark was back at the service line, putting five points on the board and West Point was off and running, up 6-1. Pendley then showed her service strength, netting seven in a row and it was 12-2. The match ended on a volley by Shadix as West Point left the gym still undefeated on the young season 6-0.
Cold Springs and Sumiton Christian went to battle with the homestanding Lady Eagles holding advantage from the beginning and keeping the visitors at bay.
Hayden Goodwin got three points in a row, lifting Brendan Voce's Lady Eagles to an 18-12 edge. Hamby scored on a serve with assistance by a block at the net from Aubrey Negron, sending the Lady Eagles up 22-15.
Sumiton slowed up Cold Springs for the moment on points by Jackson and Calloway. The Lady Eagles stopped the Sumiton surge when Emma Chambers nailed a kill, completing the first set by the margin of 25-18.
In game two, Sumiton grabbed a 16-10 lead and looked to be on the way of sending this match to a third set.
Cold Springs regained its poise as four straight service points by Kinley Campbell brought the Lady Eagles from behind and never to trail again.
Hamby showed her ability to drill the ball over the net from the front line with three kills in crunch time. Anna Kate Voce had a critical block and a volley at the end, supporting two good serves from Emily Williams.
Sumiton Christian fell to 2-7 on the season.
Up next for Cold Springs: Vs. West End Monday
Up next for West Point: Tri-match vs. Fairview, Lawrence Co Tuesday.
Photo 1: West Point's Lexu Shadix (3) tries to block a kill from Anna Kate Voce.
Photo 2: West Point's Celena Clark (20) sets the ball to a teammate.
Photo 3: Cold Springs' Emma Chambers about to serve vs. West Point.
Photo 4: Cold Springs' Emi Harbison gets ready to serve to Sumiton Christian.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton
At Fazi-Richard Athletic Center:
Cold Springs 25 25 25
St. Bernard 11 17 21
Cold Springs (2-1) wins match 3-0
Time of Match: 1:04
FLASH NOTES: Cold Springs coach Brendan Voce was not aware that the Lady Eagles remained in the Top 10 of the 2A state volleyball, until Sportspage informed him prior to match time Thursday evening with St. Bernard.
Giving something to show for, the Lady Eagles steered the course in sweeping the Lady Saints, spoiling St. Bernard's season opener.
Cold Springs got control right off in the opening set, leading 8-1 as Anna Kate Voce scored four straight on serve. A kill from Aubrey Negron pushed the score to 12-3 and a service point by Hayden Goodwin moments later, upped the advantage to 17-3.
St. Bernard slowed up Cold Springs enough to draw within 22-10 after the Lady Eagles served the ball into the net.
A volley by Sydney Newton, then a point on a net error by St. Bernard and a service winner by Jessi Pulliam ended the first set in a 25-11 final.
Cold Springs was ahead in game two 8-5 as St. Bernard fought off a service break and tied the score at 8-8 on three consecutive service points by Olivia Brown.
The Lady Eagles regrouped and gained a 13-9 edge on an ace from Kinley Campbell. A kill by Kylon Hamby and a service point from Goodwin sent the advantage to 20-13.
Back came Tiffany Hinkle-Pope's Lady Saints. Macy Whaley tallied a service point and the comeback was in process at 23-17. But a net serve and a service winner from Voce enabled the Lady Eagles to take the second set in being strongly challenged.
For game three, St. Bernard started out on top on service points from Bridget Gallegos and a net foul on Cold Springs gave the Lady Saints a 7-4 lead. Then the Lady Eagles went to work with Hamby accounting for five consecutive service points with the Lady Eagles moving on top by the score of 12-8.
Emma Chambers had a service point that pushed the visitors to a 20-15 cushion. St. Bernard showed poise and narrowed the deficit to 23-21 when Whaley connected on an ace.
The St. Bernard momentum was broken on Cold Springs' receiving the ball as Negron scored on a kill for a 24-21 lead and Emily Williams delivered an ace at 6:29 p.m. to conclude the match in an hour and four minutes.
Hamby scored seven points on serve in the match for Cold Springs, Emi Harbison had five, Voce netted seven and Goodwin five.
St. Benard's performance was anchored by Whaley with four service points and four kills, Emma Tafazoli two serves and two kills, Brown five service points and a kill and Gallegos five service points.
Up next for Cold Springs: At Carbon Hill Invitational Saturday
Up next for St. Bernard: Vs. Lindsay Lane & Vinemont Sept. 10
Photo 1: Cold Springs' Anna Kate Voce (11) serves in 1st set with St. Bernard.
Photo 2: Cold Springs' Emi Harbison discusses a call with the referee.
Photo 3: St. Bernard's Claudia Fallin (32), Yessi Pascual (9) and Gabby Bennett (24) follow the ball over the net.
Photo 4: St. Bernard coach Tiffany Hinkle-Pope talks with team during a time out.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton
Cold Springs Eagles:
Coach: Rod Elliott
Record at Cold Springs: 51-54 (11th year)
2017 record: 1-9 (0-6 in 2A, R 6)
2018: Cold Springs is in 2A, R 5 with Aliceville, Southeastern, Sulligent, Sumiton Christian, Tarrant, Winston County.
Key personnel returning: QB Brody Williams, QB Jordan Lacey, RB Peyton Alexander, RB Calvin McNabb, RB Mason Harris, OL Zeke White, OL Jacob McClendon, OL Steven Boyette.
2018 schedule: Aug. 23 - Meek, Aug, 31 - Berry, Sept. 7 - @ Southeastern, Sept. 14 - Sumiton Christian, Sept. 21 - @ Aliceville, Sept. 28 - @ Appalachian, Oct. 12 - Winston County, Oct. 19 - @ Tarrant, Oct. 26 - Sulligent, Nov. 1 - Vinemont.
Outlook: Cold Springs went through having it worst record in seven seasons during 2017 when they managed a victory in game two against the Berry Wildcats from Fayette County.
The Eagles had averaged five wins a season between 2013 to 2016, then experienced a youth movement, especially in the backfield that caused nine defeats.
Now a year mature in the backfield, the Eagles are looking to go on the rise and win again.
Region 5 in Class 2A will bring some former opponents back on the schedule such as Aliceville and Sulligent. Appalachian is back as a non-regional foe to face the Eagles for the first time since 1999. Southeastern resumes the rivalry after a two-year absence, as does Sumiton Christian.
Regional foes from the last two years, Winston County and Tarrant, were placed in Region 5 with the Eagles.
The Eagles and Meek Tigers get together for the first time since 2007, Berry comes from Fayette for the second consecutive season and 11th meeting all time. The series is 5-5 heading into the August 31 battle.
Coach Rod Elliott has one county team on the schedule this year in the Vinemont Eagles. Cold Springs has six wins all time, including the last two by scores of 21-15 in 2014 and 50-7 during the 2015 campaign.
By nature, the Eagles open and close the regular season with Thursday night contests. Elliott enters his 11th season as the winningest coach in Cold Springs history. Cold Springs has produced 26 victories in the last six seasons, 16 in regional games. That's a far change from 2007 to 2011 with three wins in 50 total games.
Photos of Cold Springs practice Aug. 13 by Johnny Thornton
Cullman County JV Semifinal # 2
At Jack Howell Field - Hanceville:
Cold Springs 2 0 1 2 - 5
Fairview 0 0 0 4 - 4
WP: Emma Black
LP: Olivia Overton
TIME OF GAME: 1:15
FLASH NOTES: Cold Springs gained the lead after the top of the first when Fairview committed an error and also had three wild pitches with Heidi Nichols and Anna Rollo scoring.
A run was added to the Lady Eagles side of the scoreboard in the third on back to back to back singles by Black, Morgan Chasteen and Madelyn Pearl. It was Pearl's single that sent home courtesy runner Rollo to make it 3-0.
The Cold Springs fourth produced an RBI on a sacrifice bunt by Amelia Wren and an error when Nichols' fly ball to left was dropped, scoring Destinee Tucker for a 5-0 advantage.
Player under an hour and 15 minute time limit, Cold Springs survived a final inning comeback by Fairview.
Josie Farr produced two runs on a single, an RBI was recorded by a grounder from Tessa Buckelew and a run-scoring single off the bat of Sydni Hall.
Black was able to to get Callie Hicks to ground to second, forcing out Overton to end the battle at 6:04 p.m.
SPORTSPAGE PLAYER OF THE GAME:
Emma Black of Cold Springs: 1-2, RBI, winning pitcher, 4 runs allowed, 6 hits, 4 Ks.
Photo 1: Cold Springs' Heidi Nichols goes for a single in game vs. Fairview.
Photo 2: Kyla Aaron drives the ball for a hit in 5-4 semifinal win against Fairview.
Photo 3: Cold Springs' Morgan Chasteen belts a hit in the finals vs. West Point.
Photo 4: Cold Springs and West Point in postgame prayer following the championship.
Sportspage photos by Johnny Thornton