EAST BEND — The Forbush Falcons volleyball team hosted its cross-county rivals, the Starmount Rams, on Monday night. Forbush came out in its new red-and-white uniform and was looking to take a win over the Lady Rams. The Falcons put down kill after kill and were able to hold off a feisty Starmount team to take a 3-0 win (25-17, 25-12, 25-22).
“That was probably one of the best games I have seen them play,” said Forbush head coach Taylor Carangi. “They worked really well together. They were scrappy, we haven’t been that scrappy in a long time.”
The Falcons came out swinging in the first two sets as Colby Crater, Parkley Hennings and Camryn Doub put down perfect kills. Forbush was able to pull away from the Rams in the first set, as Hennings had two kills in a row for a 21-14 lead.
In the second set, Crater put down four of the opening five points for the Falcons. She had two kills and two blocks to give Forbush a 5-0 lead over the Rams.
While the front row was a powerhouse for the Falcons, the defensive players were the saving grace. Ebony Williams came up with dig after dig on the back row for Forbush. During the first set, Williams laid out and made a pancake dig with her hand flat on the floor. The dig was able to find the hands of Laiken Baity, who set up Hennings for the kill.
Sommer Gray also had a successful night with several digs that should have hit the floor. Gray was able to sprint across the court and dig up a hit by the Rams with one hand. Her dig set up the Falcons for a point and gave the Forbush fans something to cheer about.
“Ebony played her butt off, her and Sommer are our defense to the T,” said Carangi. “I mean Parkley is a really good all-around player and our setters play good defense, but Ebony touched every ball. I almost never expect her to shag a ball and then with Sommer right behind her, the two of them run that back line.”
Although Forbush swept the Rams, Starmount was able to make the three-set match interesting along the way. In the third set, Starmount was able to jump out to an early lead with great plays all around the court. Abbey Johnson had an ace that hit the middle of the court and gave Starmount a 2-0 lead. Forbush was able to cut Starmount’s lead to one point as Crater put down a tip, but the Rams didn’t let Forbush build on its momentum.
Crater had been knocking down kills all night, and in the third set, the Rams were able to get a huge block on the 6’2 senior. Karli Brown, Elizabeth Cartwright and Emma Freed went up for a triple block in the middle on Crater. The hit went off the block, and Starmount won the point with a successful three-man block.
“We knew coming in they were big across the net,” said Starmount head coach Jordan Anderson. “Our goal was just to move it away from Parkley and Colby, and when we did that, we were successful.”
Starmount was able to keep things going its way as Kayla Vanhoy put down a kill and Johnson had a tip to make the score 12-4. Although Starmount had the upper hand on the scoreboard, the Falcons changed things up and started chipping away at the lead. Hennings, Cathryn Prim and Crater put down kills, which were followed up with an ace by Doub.
The turning point of the set came off of an ace by Baity, which tied the score 21-21. Both teams started to fight for the win with a back-and-forth battle, but it was Forbush who was able to knock down the final points. Crater put down a tip, then Hennings had two kills in a row to give the Falcons a 25-22 set win and the 3-0 match win.
“We couldn’t finish,” said Anderson. “We have a lot of new people, a lot of new girls who have never touched the floor who are older. I’m proud of the finish, but I’m not proud of the start. You win some and you lose some.”
With the win, Forbush moves to 12-4 overall. The Falcons host North Surry (9-7, 4-2) on Thursday in East Bend. Starmount moves to 10-5 overall and will travel to Alleghany (12-2, 7-0) on Thursday.
“We needed this win,” said Carangi. “This game kind of turned us going into the second half of conference. Having North Surry on Thursday, this is what we needed to start and they played really well. I’m proud of them.”