MULBERRY GROVE – When Ramsey’s Jessica Carroll took over the serve with her team leading 14-10 in the first set, the coaches, players and fans reacted as if it was just another serve.
When her service ended with Ramsey leading 21-10, it appeared Mulberry Grove was going to drop a lopsided decision.
But coach Natalie Lappe called her second timeout of the set and reminded her team of a simple fact.
“It’s a group of good girls,” she said. “I told them, ‘It’s not whether we win or lose, we have to have fun. Ten years from now, we’re not going to remember if we won or lost.’”
A more relaxed Aces squad came back onto the court, broke the serve and played hard the rest of the way, closing the final gap to 25-17.
“They did it themselves,” Lappe said. “They knew what they had to do.”
That is the one of the biggest surprises from Mulberry Grove, according to Lappe, who said her players frequently explain what they did wrong before the first-year coach can correct them.
The Aces used their late-set momentum to pull out an early lead of 12-11 in the second set of last Thursday night’s match, but after a Ramsey timeout, Carroll displayed strong serving once again, pushing the Rams ahead 15-12
“She’s a team leader,” coach Becky Eddy said.
From there, Ramsey slowly inched ahead, also taking the second set 25-17 to even its season record at 3-3.
“The more they win, the better they feel about themselves, the more they try in practice and the harder they play,” Eddy said.
Carroll led the way on the floor for the Rams as well, earning 12 total points and leading the team with two kills. She also added eight service aces.
For the Aces, playing a close match will help give them confidence that they can earn their first win this season.
Lappe said if the Aces can continue staying close in matches, that will happen.
“We’re looking for a win now,” she said. “We’ve had several close games, and we’re going to turn one into a win pretty quick.”
Ramsey also defeated Mulberry Grove in the JV contest last Thursday, winning in straight sets, 25-8, 25-20.
Ashley Blankenship led the way for the Rams with four service aces, three kills and three assists.
Monday, Sept. 20
Ramsey at Vandalia
Ramsey lost to Vandalia in straight sets (16-25, 15-25) on Monday. Angel McDonald had six points and four service aces for the Rams. The JV team was also defeated by the Vandals, falling 15-25, 23-25. Elizabeth Hortenstine scored nine points and Blankenship had three kills.
Saturday, Sept. 18
At Windsor Tournament
Ramsey vs. Arcola
Ramsey was defeated by Arcola 25-9, 14-25, 13-25 in the first game of the Windsor Tournament on Saturday. Morgan Miller led the way for Ramsey with seven points, five blocks and three service aces.
Ramsey vs. Windsor
Windsor swept Ramsey in two sets (25-17, 25-16) in the Rams’ second game of the Windsor Tournament. Cecelia Miller had four points, and McDonald had three blocks.
Ramsey vs. Lovington
The Rams got their lone win of the Windsor Tournament against Lovington, winning in straight sets (25-17, 25-16). Carroll had 10 points and six service aces for Ramsey.
Friday, Sept. 17
Ramsey at Beecher City
It took three sets for Ramsey to oust Beecher City (26-24, 19-25, 25-21) last Friday. Darien Carter scored 10 points for the Rams, and Morgan Miller had four service aces.
The Rams JV squad won 25-21, 25-15 with Jenna Hunt recording 14 points and six service aces. Ramsey’s freshman team lost 25-11, 25-5.
Monday, Sept. 13
Mulberry Grove at Odin
Mulberry Grove was defeated by Odin last Monday. The team took an early lead, winning the first set, 26-24. But
Odin went on to win the next two sets (25-16, 25-20) to take the match.
The JV squad was beat 25-20. 25-14.