The Albia Lady Dees ended their 2019 season on Monday night one game short of the state tournament succumbing to the dynamic duo from West Liberty 3-0. The Comet used the strong net play by Macy Daufeldt and Martha Pace to off-set the Albia attack led by Abbey Griffin.
Both teams brought a loud and passionate fan base and the opening game started with plenty to cheer about. There were three lead changes in the first points and when Griffin hit an ace serve to give Albia a 4-3 edge the Albia faithful exploded with encouragement.
Unfortunately for the Lady Dees the middle of the West Liberty attack began to flex its muscle. With the score 5-5 the Comets were able to put down three consecutive kills. A block by Griffin cut the deficit to 8-9. Albia stayed close but West Liberty went on a 6-1 run highlighted by two ace serves to make it 10-15.
Kills by Jenna Gronewold and Griffin made it 12-15 but another four-point run gave the Comets a comfortable advantage and they used the strong serving of Daufeldt to finish out the set with a 16-25 victory.
A net violation gave Albia a 1-0 lead to start the second set. The Comets responded with an outside kill and Griffin gave Albia a side out with an outside kill set by Alex Beard. West Liberty took the lead with a middle kill and an ace serve but a kill by Griffin and Ashley Beary put the Lady Dees in the lead.
A middle block and a kill led to another lead change. With the score 5-5 Beary hit another kill to make it 6-5 but West Liberty was to go on another run 6-1 run to make it 7-11. A floor spike by Griffin and a long kill attempt cut the deficit to 9-11. The Comets were able to maintain the margin and with the score 12-15 went on a 9-1 run before Tanae Thiravong blocked a kill to make it 14-24. Albia managed two more points but a floor kill by Daufeldt ended the set.
Undaunted the Lady Dees took the court for set three and used dinks by Alex Beard and Griffin to stay close at 3-4 and a middle kill by Ellie Spurgin and middle block by Ashley Beary gave life to the Albia effort. But with the score 6-7 West Liberty went on a nine-point burst ended only by an outside kill by Beary. Kills by Gronewold and Griffin were the only points scored by the Lady Dees in the third game and West Liberty punched their ticket to the state tournament with a 9-25 victory.
The Comet duo ended the night with 31 kills, three blocks and three ace serves. Albia’s results are not yet posted. The Lady Dees finish the 2019 campaign 29-10.