By Mark Beer
Following the tournament win in Smithton, the Holy Childhood School 8th grade girls’ volleyball team started regular season play on February 2 at home against St. John Smithton.
The HCS Apaches continued their winning ways, beating St. John Smithton in straight sets. The first set was a close one, with Apaches pulling out the win by a score of 26-24. Taylor Cahill led the charge with six aces in the first set, and the Apaches also got nice service runs from Izzy Bridegroom and Emma Amann, who finished out the set. Avery Beer and Chi Chi Uptergrove also played well in the first match with Beer setting Uptergrove for a couple untouchable spikes.
In the second set, the Apaches jumped out in an early lead and never looked back, winning 25-4 with great middle hitter play by Jordyn Fritz.
On Tuesday, Feb. 8, Holy Childhood hosted their annual volleyball tournament with a field of ten teams. Holy Childhood played their first-round match against St. Teresa of Belleville. Left side hitter Hannah Killian had a nice night recording six kills to help the Apaches win both sets by a score of 25-20.
Wednesday night, the Apaches took on Queen of Peace from Belleville in semifinal action. In the first set the Apaches jumped out to an early lead and with the score at 15-14, Beer went on a fantastic ten-service run to finish the set. Queen of Peace dominated the second set, winning 25-16.
In the third and deciding set, the Apaches came out victorious, winning 15-9 bolstered by great front row play from Uptergrove on the left side and Fritz in the middle. Beer once again finished the set, serving the last three on the way to victory.
In the championship match on Friday night, the Apaches were set to take on larger school St. Clare from O’Fallon. There was a very nice crowd in attendance for the game generating a fun and intense atmosphere.
In the first set, St. Clare jumped out to an early lead and never looked back winning 25-21. Hoping to turn things around in the second set, the Apaches worked hard but couldn’t catch any breaks and trailed St. Clare the entire set with the opposing team coming out on top 25-19. This was the Apaches first loss of the season, bringing their record to 7-1.
On Monday night this week, Holy Childhood hosted the Mascoutah Middle School Braves for an in-town rivalry game featuring games for the 6th, 7th & 8th grade squads.
In the 6th grade match, the Braves held on to win in three sets.
For the Holy Childhood 7th grade team, this was their first game of the season. The Apaches played well against the Braves 7th grade team considering it was their first test of the year but lost in straight sets.
The 8th grade game was exciting and featured great play by both teams. In the first set, play was back and forth with the Braves holding a narrow lead halfway through by a score of 12-9.
Middle hitter Fritz played a solid set for the Apaches with some nice plays at middle hitter but the Brave’s Ceretta Dawson had two dominate service runs and Avery Boehm had a spectacular kill to lead the way for a Braves 25-15 victory.
In the second set, it was back and forth until Braves player Emma Price went on a four service run to push the Brave’s lead to 11-4. Beer had a nice set to Uptergrove for a powerful spike on the right side to end the run and cut the Braves lead to 11-5.
The Apaches made a little run and following another big spike by Uptergrove, this time on the left side, they only trailed the Braves 17-13. That was as close as the Apaches would get, however, with the Braves putting the game away on service runs by Dawson and Price en route to a 25-15 victory.
The real excitement of the evening was watching a fantastic group of volleyball players that will be playing for Mascoutah High School in the future!