WILLIAMSON – In a thrilling matchup that was pushed to five sets, the Cowanesque Valley Indians came up just short to the Canton Warriors of a first round districts victory by a set score of 3-2.
The Indians put on quite a show in the contest with both teams playing well, and going back and forth from set to set. The Warriors team came into the contest as the number one seed, and the Indians were easily swept by Canton earlier this season, but looked determined to win out of the gates.
The Indians played an extremely strong opening set, and were able set the tone for an impressive showing for the Indians. Early in the first set, the Indians fell behind 7-3, but were able to close the gap quickly and rallied back to tie the game at 9-9, and then take their first lead of the night of 11-10.
They continued to add to their lead with strong defense and some great serves by Mikayla Vargeson that helped push their lead all the way to 20-15 late in the set. Rylie Walker was key in being able to close out the set with some big plays that gave the Indians a big win of 25-20.
In the second set of action, Canton was able to find some success after falling behind 1-0 and dominated throughout. They jumped out to an 11-3 advantage early and never looked back as they coasted to a 25-8 win over the Indians to knot up the contest at one apiece.
After dropping an important set, the Indians refused to fold and came back with a very aggressive play-style in the third set.
Canton was able to build a 9-6 lead to open up the game, but Walker continued her impressive clutch performance with a thunderous kill to bring the Indians within two.
The scoring continued to go back and forth between the teams, until Vargeson closed the gap on a big time play that tied the game at 12. The two teams continued to battle for the lead with neither giving an inch down the stretch.
With the score tied at 22, the Indians came up with some huge plays down the stretch and went on a 3-1 run to close out the set with Walker once again being the closer for the Indians, coming up with a big kill to close out the game for and give them a 2-1 lead and a chance to pull off a major upset against the top seeded team in the bracket.
Canton saw their chances at moving on slowly slipping away and they seemed to kick their game into another level in the next two sets. The Warriors dominated the fourth set, jumping out to a commanding 10-3 lead and continued to put their foot on the gas as they cruised to a decisive 25-9 win to force a game deciding final set.
In the final set, Canton continued to close out the game strong and took home the win in a demanding manner by a 15-4 score.
Despite the loss, the Indians showed a lot of resilience and determination being able to put up an extremely formidable fight against the top team in the bracket.
The Indians will return seven players on their roster next season, including standouts Walker and Vargeson who will give them a strong foundation to grow with in their upcoming seasons.