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Middle school volleyball showing improvement
Middle school volleyball, 9.13.17
The Dawson County Middle School volleyball team receives the serve during last week’s home match against Faith Christian. - photo by Amy French

The Dawson County middle school volleyball program picked up three wins last week when the two teams played Faith Christian at home and Lakeview Academy on the road.

On Sept. 5, Dawson’s “A” and “B” team faced the Lady Saints at Dawson County Middle School where the A team played three sets to get the win: 25-9, 23-25, 15-6.

“I honestly didn’t know what to expect out of the girls since this is our first year starting the volleyball program,” said Coach Jessi Edwards. “The girls have come a long way since I have seen them first over the summer.”

With extended volleys in the first set, the Lady Tigers were able to show how far the fledgling program has come in only its first season. 

The serving of Cydney Cunningham and offense up front from Avery Harring propelled the team to a first set win. 

In the second set, the Lady Saints began with an ace. The score was tight throughout and the Lady Saints picked up a 25-23 win. 

Middle school volleyball pic 2, 9.13.17
Avery Harring serves for the DCMS volleyball team on Sept. 5. - photo by Amy French
For the third set, the Lady Tigers jumped out early on serves again by Cunningham and a kill from Harring followed by five Harring serves in a row that included an ace.

Dawson took the match with the 15-6 win the last set.

“Tuesday’s win gave the girls confidence,” Edwards said. “They were extremely excited and had more desire to win again on Wednesday.

“I was so happy for the girls when they won. They played more like a team. They were more encouraging to one another.”

In its two sets with Faith Christian, the B team played close the whole way, opening with solid serves including an ace from Skyler Murphy.

At 22-20 with Faith ahead, Dawson called a timeout. 

The Lady Tigers got a return at 24-20 but were unable to finish out and lost 25-22. 

“Both games were very close,” Edwards said. “After moving girls around, they didn’t play as team.”

Lily McCracken picked up two aces early in the second set. She also got the point on a ball that just dribbled over before Dawson tied it at 17. 

Lexi Roland served to take Dawson 20 and an extended volley gave the ball back to the Lady Saints. The game was tied again at 22. 

Faith held on for the 26-24 win.

On Sept. 6, the teams traveled to Gainesville to face Lakeview where the A team lost the first set 25-23 before winning the next two to take the match.

“In the first game against Lakeview, the girls made some mental mistakes,” Edwards said. “They knew what they were and fixed them in the next two games.”

Ella Suita had an ace in the second set to win and Kirklyn Porter won the match on her serve following a kill from Suita.

“The girls have realized not to ever give up. In volleyball the other team can be down by a large amount and come back to win with a surge,” Edwards said.

The B team got an early lead in their first set over the Lady Lions who came back to tie the game at 8.

McCracken served two aces to lead 13-11 and prompt a timeout by Lakeview.

Another Dawson ace gave the team the first set at 25-21.

In the final set of the night, McCracken served seven in a row to put the Lady Tigers ahead 7-2. Again Lakeview called a timeout, but it didn’t disrupt McCracken’s serve.

She proceeded to serve eight more including four aces before being called for a foot fault. 

“That put a damper on the girls because they knew they were not crossing over the line,” Edwards said. “That is something we have to deal with because the officials aren’t perfect.”

The B team won the second set 25-11.

The teams will play again today starting at 4:30 p.m. at Tallulah Falls Middle School.