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Lady Rebs rally to stop Crawford

September 30, 2009
Crawford County suffered a meltdown in its match against visiting South Central Thursday as the Lady Rebels rallied from two games down to get a five-game win, leaving Lady Pack coach Kim Allen trying to figure out what to do to get her team to improve.

South Central’s Carolyn Zipp delivers a shot past Crawford County’s Kim Holzbog in game three of the Lady Rebels’ five-game win over the Lady Pack. Zipp finished with nine kills. (Photo by Wade Bell)
"You have to go out there every game and play to win, not go out to keep from losing," a frustrated Allen said following the loss. "That's what we did."

At first, it looked like the Lady Pack were going to run away with the match, as Crawford County easily won game one, 25-16, then hung on to earn game two, 25-22.

Game three, however, saw a dramatic change as South Central exploded to an 8-1 lead. Crawford County slowly chewed its way back into the game, as Brooke Howerton delivered a pair of service aces to give the Lady Pack a 12-11 lead.

That lasted only briefly, however, as Carolyn Zipp punched in a kill to push the Lady Rebels back in front. Crawford County fell behind by three, but the Lady Rebels later made three straight errors to allow the Lady Pack a 20-19 lead. Emily McIntosh added to the lead with a kill, but Katie Dennison answered for the Lady Rebels with a pair of kills. Zipp tied the game at 19, but Kim Holzbog tipped to keep Crawford County in front.

Then, came some lead changes, with Taylor Cox putting Crawford County in front, 26-25, as the game went long. Kristin Miller countered to tie. Crawford County then made two errors, and the Lady Rebels had the game, 28-26.

"It seems like when we struggle on the back row, everybody has trouble catching up," Shaffer said. "Not so much mentally, but they have trouble catching up with a good set and catching up with a good attack. Mentally, if that front row is not getting the job done, everybody loses confidence. Likewise, when they do well on the front row, we seem to pick up and say, 'We can all do this.' Everybody picks up their game."

South Central's confidence continued to climb in game four. Crawford County kept the game close, but then Shelby Miller splashed in a kill and Whitney Pease followed with an ace. Courtney Woertz and Dennison later pushed the advantage to 19-13. The Lady Pack never recovered and fell, 25-18, forcing the match into a decisive game five.

"Nobody attacked, and we've had game after game after game where this has happened," Allen said. "It seems like our girls just do not understand that you've got to go and not be afraid to make the mistake in order to win the ball game."

South Central was ready for game five and quickly ran to an 8-3 lead. Crawford County fought back as Kayla Toney delivered a kill. The Lady Rebels then made three straight errors, but Zipp gave South Central a kill to keep the Lady Rebels in front by three. Three more Lady Rebel errors allowed a 10-all tie.

McIntosh and Holzbog killed for Crawford County to push the Lady Pack in front by two. Crawford County then misfired, and Zipp and Pease followed with tips for a 13-12 Lady Rebel advantage. Dennison finished the match with tips to give South Central not only the game, at 15-12, but the match.

"We should have just won this in three," Allen said. "At Paoli the other night, they laid it all out on the line and Paoli was a much better team than this was. Tonight, I can honestly sit back and say, 'Hey, I have nothing good to say about any of you tonight,' because nobody put forth the effort it was going to take to win.' That's what it takes."

Holzbog and Toney led Crawford County with 11 kills each. Crystal Allen and McIntosh finished with seven kills each. Crawford County missed 12 serves but committed 11 service aces. Errors proved to be the big problem for the Lady Pack, who collected 40.

"I've got good hitters," Allen said, "and for some reason, when it comes down to it, I don't know what happened, we want to tip it over. On the opposite end of the floor, we just let tips drop. We sit there and we holler, 'Tip, tip, tip,' and our feet are stuck, glued to the floor because we won't go and move."

Dennison led South Central with 13 kills, and Abby Day followed with 11. Zipp finished with nine kills, and Shelby Miller added seven kills. Pease had three kills and three service aces. South Central missed 10 serves but had six aces. The Lady Rebels finished with 45 errors.

Allen said her team has to learn to play to win.

"I told these girls the other night at Paoli, which was a heartbreaker, the team that hits the ball is the team that's going to win," she said. "If we're going to go out there every game and we're going to play to keep from losing, then we're not going to win games."

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