For Starmount, East Wilkes and Forbush high schools, their hopes of a volleyball state championship were dashed Tuesday night. Starmount and East Wilkes fell in the second round of the 1A tournament, while Forbush lost in the second round of the 2A.
Starmount falls 3-0
Starmount fell 3-0 to Community School of Davidson (CSD), Southern Piedmont Athletic Conference champions for the past three seasons, but at times they had them shaking in their shoes. The Rams put pressure on early in the match, even leading 19-16 in the first set. However, getting static on the court and some missed serves cost them as they lost 25-22. A free ball is one that’s passed over the net by the opposing team because they didn’t want to chance an attack, and on more than a few occassions, CSD put the free ball where Starmount wasn’t, and made them pay.
“When the free balls started to drop it just seemed like we started getting tense, but we just needed to relax and take a deep breath to refocus,” Starmount sophomore Maggie Freed said.
After losing the first set, Starmount continued to struggle and couldn’t get back in its groove. Starmount lost the next two sets 25-15. It marks the end of senior Ashley Johnson’s volleyball career at Starmount. Johnson was a member of the 2013 championship team, and admitted there were some challenges throughout the season being the team’s only senior, but they overcame many of those.
“They are still young but they have a lot of potential. I think this year will end up helping them,” Johnson said. “They had to come together and learn how to really be a team. I couldn’t be prouder of the girls.”
“It is going to be tough losing Ashley,” Freed said. “She was a major contributor to the team. Making it back to the state playoffs will result from hard work and adjusting throughout the season.”
Starmount finished the season 10-4 in the Mountain Valley Athletic Conference, good for second overall. The Rams defeated Robbinsville last Saturday in the first round of the 1A playoffs.
Rosman thwarts potential upset against East Wilkes 3-2
No. 21 East Wilkes came just a few points away from its second straight upset over No. 5 Rosman Tuesday night, but it wasn’t meant to be for the Cardinals. After stunning No. 12 West Montgomery Saturday night, the Cardinals traveled to Rosman hoping to keep their postseason magic alive.
The Cardinals jumped out to a 2-0 lead behind 25-20 and 25-22 wins. That’s when Rosman’s captain Callie Chappell determined that it wasn’t going to be her last game. Chappell had 26 kills, four blocks, 38 digs, as the team started to click. They still needed to erase the deficit, and behind tight 28-26 and 25-23 wins, did just that. That forced a game to 15 to settle it all. With momentum on its side, Rosman ended the upset hopes with a 15-11 win to advance to the third round.
East Wilkes finished the season at 9-5 in the Mountain Valley Athletic Conference, good for third overall.
Forbush falls to Wheatmore 3-0
After defeating East Burke 3-2 in a thriller Saturday night to advance to the second round of the 2A tournament, Forbush knew it’d have a challenge on its hands traveling No. 2 Wheatmore Tuesday night.
Based on the way the team played, there’s no doubt Wheatmore earned its No. 2 seed this season. The team won decidingly in all three sets, 25-13, 25-12, and 25-11. Forbush earned its way into the tournament as well, finishing with a 17-10 record, and 6-4 in the Western Piedmont Athletic Conference, good for second overall.
Ryan DeCosta can be reached at 336-258-4052 or via Twitter @rsdecosta.