Baylor’s power hitting and balance were too much for the Walker Valley Lady Mustangs in volleyball Monday evening.
The Lady Red Raiders improved to 27-11 on the season with a three-game sweep.
Baylor pounded the Lady Mustangs (22-12), with three hitters collecting a majority of the team’s kills. Powerful Rachel Travis, Nicole Sumida and Madeline Rose combined for 37 kills.
Travis led the way with 17 kills; Sumida, who towers over 6 feet, got 11; and Rose contributed nine.
Baylor coach Sarah Lail said the match was one of the best of the season for her Lady Raiders. The winning team controlled the action in each game, although Walker Valley rallied to make it close in the second and third games.
Baylor dominated the first game, 25-15, but was pushed to the limit in the second (26 -24), and took the final game 24-21.
Walker Valley had a chance to win the second game and tie the match. Leading 24-23 with the serve, Travis had three consecutive kills to lift the Lady Raiders to victory.
Walker Valley coach Judy Pruett was less than pleased with the performance and effort of her team. “This was not one of our best matches,” she said at the conclusion of the evening’s play.
Pruett felt the lack of hitting was a weakness for her team throughout the match. “When you don’t hit, you can’t win,” the Walker Valley coach said.
Preutt emphasized that Baylor is not a district opponent, and that her team must now focus on its final two matches of the regular season ... both district matches. The Lady Mustangs will travel to McMinn County today and play at home Thursday against Bradley Central. Once the season is concluded, district playoffs will begin.
In addition to the power-hitting exhibition, Baylor was also balanced on defense and got an outstanding game from libero Katelyn Armstrong, who had 26 digs.
Among the bright spots for Walker Valley was the play of libero Madison Akins. Kayla Sewell, Caitlin Geren and Karis Terpstra had some moments for the Lady Mustangs during the three games.
The Lady Mustangs were tied with Baylor at 11-11 in the first game, but the Lady Raiders went on a run to 18-11 and won by 10 points, 25-15.
Walker Valley trailed in the second game, 20-16, before rallying to tied the score at 20-20 and 22-22. Sewell served with a 24-23 lead, and the Lady Mustangs had a shot at victory. A good set and big kill by Travis gave Baylor side-out with the score at 24-24. Two follow-up kills by Travis put the visitors on top by two games.
The Lady Mustangs rallied again in the third game, but a serve into the net gave the Lady Raiders a 24-21 win to end the match.