Davie volleyball handles business at East Forsyth
Published 2:11 pm Tuesday, October 3, 2023
By Brian Pitts
In the first meeting in late August, East Forsyth’s volleyball team handed Davie a stinging loss that saw the War Eagles take the first two sets before dropping the last three.
All was forgiven in Kernersville on Sept. 26. Davie emphatically handled business, winning 27-25, 25-27, 25-18, 25-17. The payback win kept Davie tied with West Forsyth for second in the Central Piedmont Conference.
“The first match that we played them was a tough pill to swallow,” coach Amber Brandon said. “It’s something our kids, especially the seniors, still haven’t gotten over. It’s still talked about a lot in practice, so I felt like we were going to be dialed in.”
Pulling out the first set was huge, and the signature moment belonged to sophomore Addison McKay.
“She came in completely cold when the score was tied 25-25,” Brandon said. “Her first serve of the game was an ace, which was huge for us to get that momentum point right there at the end. It was a big play for her. We could not have drawn up a better serve in that moment. It was beautiful.”
There was plenty to be excited about as Davie stopped a five-match losing streak in the series.
Junior Emma Willard had 18 digs and senior Hailey Johnson 10. Senior Mikaylah Hutton paced Davie in kills (25) and aces (four). And senior Lauren O’Connor produced 37 assists, seven digs and three aces.
“A couple of Emma’s digs were at pretty big times,” Brandon said. “She picked one out of the back row when the first set was pretty tight. That was a big momentum-changer for us.
“Hailey was great in the third and fourth sets. Her defensive play is what gave us momentum and spread the (margins).
“Mikaylah had a really good night. She is carrying a huge load. She is a six-rotation pin. She’s having to carry a lot of the offensive load, even on the back row, with Malia (Privett) being hurt.
“Lauren had a great game. Any time she has a really good game, we’re always going to be successful. She played well defensively. Those four had solid games, which was the difference for us.”
Reagan 3, Davie 0
Reagan has completely overmatched everyone – the unbeaten Raiders have lost one set all year – and the match at Davie on Sept. 28 was no different.
Reagan rose to 24-0 overall and 10-0 in the CPC by putting up scores of 25-11, 25-15, 25-15 against the War Eagles, who saw their winning streak end at four.
Going into the week, West Forsyth (8-2) was a half-game ahead of Davie (7-3), but Davie and West collide in Clemmons on Oct. 5 to determine second. Davie is 11-5 overall.
Davie’s JV beat East Forsyth and lost to Reagan, both matches going two sets. The War Eagles are 10-5, which is a solid record for a team that has a ton of freshmen.
“Twelve of the 16 girls are freshmen, and one of the four sophomores (Callie Jenkins) has been out with an injury for four weeks,” Brandon said. “So we’ve been even less experienced. None of the other three sophomores play six rotations, so there’s no one that has a year of high school experience that is always on the court.
“At the beginning of the season, I felt like we were still a middle school team, trying to figure out the pace and the style of high school volleyball. Now I feel like they look like a JV team. They’re playing faster and playing more consistent. Now they can make adjustments on the fly. They’re more comfortable with our offense to be creative and get out of those tough rotations. They have made a ton of progress.”
Davie will get a boost by the return of Jenkins.
“Callie was just released to come back to underhand contact,” Brandon said. “She is slowly working back into things, which I think will be huge for them. Because at the beginning of the season, she was a sophomore who was playing six rotations.”