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INDEPENDENCE –– With three losses in its first six matches, a young Carroll County team hasn’t exactly found smooth sailing through the nondistrict portion of its schedule. But the Cavaliers were able to pull off something no other team has been able to do thus far in the season.
Carroll County bounced back from a first-set loss and took three straight tightly-contested games to hand Grayson County its first defeat of the season, leaving town with a 19-25, 25-23, 25-20, 25-22 win in a nondistrict match Monday night.
The win was Carroll’s third straight and put the Cavaliers’ record in the black for the first time this season at 4-3. Grayson County suffered its first defeat after opening the year with four straight wins.
The Blue Devils fought back from deficits of 20-15 and 19-15 in the second and third sets before Carroll recovered and held on. Four straight points had the Cavaliers leading 18-15 in the fourth set, but Grayson rallied with four of its own, taking a 19-18 lead on Madison Shupe’s kill. Eustacia Smith’s spike and two Grayson errors gave Carroll the lead for good, 21-19. Grayson had a free ball with a chance to tie at 23 but a kill attempt missed the mark, and Smith’s kill off a serve return ended the night.
Smith would finish with 18 kills on the night.
Grayson County rallied from a 15-12 deficit in the opening set, taking the lead for good with a 9-1 spurt that included six Cavalier errors. Kills by Autumn Halsey and Taylor Cannaday finished the set and put the Devils on top by a set.
After nine ties, Carroll used a 4-0 run to pull out to a 19-15 lead in the second, but Grayson won eight of the next 10 points, getting kills from Halsey, Mary Meier and Destiny Shupe plus a Karly Morris ace to lead 23-21. Carroll benefited from four straight Devil errors to take the set and square the match at 1-1.
Tied 15-15 in the third, the Cavaliers again pulled ahead as spikes by Samantha Hill and Autumn Hill and a block by Rachel Farmer had Carroll up 20-15. Grayson drew as close as 23-20 but Autumn Hill’s push fell just inside the end line for a side-out, and she followed with an ace, one of her 18 service points, to put Carroll ahead 2 sets to 1.
Gracie Lindsey had 15 digs and Megan Alderman put up 15 assists for the Cavaliers.