WEBSTER CITY - The seniors hugged, several even shed a tear or two, and then they went out and got serious.
No crying, just business, once the ball was put into play.
And business was good.
DFJ photo by Troy Banning
Webster City blockers Hannah Myers (left) and Bridget Moriarty (right) both get a hand on the attack of Hampton-Dumont’s Madison Sietsma last night inside the WCHS gym. The Lynx sent their seniors out with a 3-0 win over the Bulldogs.
Webster City capped off Senior Night by displaying long stretches of power at the net in a 3-0 sweep of North Central Conference rival Hampton-Dumont inside the WCHS gymnasium. No, it wasn't all glitz and glamor, but the Lynx were solid enough to steamroll the Bulldogs, 25-22, 25-13, 25-16.
"It was a good way for the seniors to have that final regular season match," WCHS head coach Jess Howard said. "Getting a team in three, we haven't done a whole lot of that this year, so to come out and finish quickly was good."
WCHS (17-9, 4-3 NCC) moved over .500 in the conference for the first time in several weeks, and avenged its only league loss from a season ago. The Bulldogs (5-13, 2-6 NCC) lost to the Lynx for the second time this season.
Attacks - WCHS: Bridget Moriarty 6-10, 5 kills; Morgan Gourley 20-24, 7 kills; Kaylee Schnathorst 31-39, 15 kills; Molly Gilbert 9-13, 5 kills; Hannah Myers 7-10, 3 kills; Mikaleh McCoy 5-6, 2 kills.
Blocks - WCHS: Moriarty 1, Gourley 1, Gilbert 3, Myers 1, McCoy 1.
Digs - WCHS: Kaitlyn Kehoe 6, Monica Maharry 1, Gourley 11, Ashley Price 8, Schnathorst 11, Myers 1, Tiffany Constable 22.
Assists - WCHS: Kehoe 11, Price 21.
Serving - WCHS: Kehoe 12-13; Maharry 7-7; Gourley 4-5; Price 14-15, 2 aces; Schnathorst 12-13, 1 ace; Constable 19-20, 3 aces.
Seniors Bridget Moriarty, Monica Maharry, Kaitlyn Kehoe and Tiffany Constable all played significant roles in the rout. Moriarty blasted five kills from her middle hitter position, Kehoe doled out 11 assists and collected six digs, Maharry had a dig, and Constable - the team's libero - led all defenders with 22 digs.
Junior outside hitter Kaylee Schnathorst blasted a match-high 15 kills, but not all came from her usual spot on the left side of the court. The Lynx continued to diversify offensively with quick sets and shifting players; Schnathorst bombed several kills from the middle and right side.
"Running this new offense, it's hard to get consistency just because we're trying to work out what's best," Howard said. "But now I think we've got our strongest hitters together in the right combinations, and we ended well in that third set."
Morgan Gourley lashed seven kills, Molly Gilbert had five and Hannah Myers finished with three.
Gourley also had 11 digs, Ashley Price distributed 21 assists, and Constable had three service aces - all coming in a 9-0 run during the opener that set the tone for the remainder of the match.
WCHS doubled up the Bulldogs, 14-7, for its biggest advantage in Set No. 1, but the Bulldogs never went away. They got as close at 24-22 after fending off a pair of set points, but Moriarty slammed the door with a kill off a quick-set assist by Price.
The Lynx never trailed in the second set, as two early kills by Schnathorst, and smashes by Gourley and Myers propelled them to an early 8-2 cushion. Moriarty's lone block of the evening pushed the margin to 10, 13-3, and Hampton-Dumont never recovered.
Myers sent an off-balance attack screaming to an empty spot in the right corner to finish it off.
Hampton-Dumont led for only seconds - at 1-0 - in the final set.
WCHS will finish off the NCC schedule next week with road trips to Algona to take on Bishop Garrigan on Tuesday, followed by a date with Clear Lake on Thursday.
The Lynx and Lions will meet again later this month in the opening round of the Class 4A regionals.