Salem won without the services of their top two setters. Senior Maddie Bowman, a team captain, is lost for the season with a broken foot and Caroline Hagy, a junior, is also out for the season with a broken wrist.
In their absence Janae Blakeney and Maddie Hall took over the setting duties. Hall, a sophomore, had 16 assists and eight digs against the Knights. Blakeney already had a lot to do and she filled up the stat sheet Tuesday with 16 kills, 16 digs, four blocks and a season high 15 assists.
“That’ a tough loss,” said Salem High coach Russ Danstrom. “You hate to lose your two best setters at this point in the season.”
Other standouts Tuesday included Tori Clinevell with 20 digs and three kills. Telia Harris had 11 kills, seven digs and five blocks and Alex Abbott had three kills and a couple blocks.
The win followed a loss to a tough Blacksburg team last Thursday, as Salem fell at home 25-16, 25-18 and 25-24. Salem fell behind 10-1 at the outset.
“We dug a hole to start the match but we played much better from then and really pushed Blackssburg in the third set,” said Danstrom. “I thought that we had them in that set.”
Bowman had nine digs in what turned out to be her final high school volleyball game. She’s also an all-state caliber goalie in lacrosse and hopes to be ready for that season in the spring.
The defense was led by Clinevell with 19 digs and Blakeney with 15 digs. Harris had 3 blocks, Alex Abbott had 2 and Grace Hedge had 1 to help the defense. Harris pounded 11 kills, Blakeney added 8, Abbott had 2 while Hedge and Bowman each had a kill.
The Spartans are off tonight, returning to action next Tuesday in Pulaski.
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