Photo by Rob Howe
Your Prep Sports
IOWA CITY – Coming off an 0-4 showing at its home tournament on Saturday and mired in a losing skid City High was in need of a spark.
The Little Hawks got what it needed on Tuesday with the return of senior Kelsey Law.
Law hammered a match-high 17 kills in her season debut as Class 5A No. 10 City High snapped its losing skid at five with a 25-14, 25-13, 25-22 sweep of Cedar Rapids Washington (1-5) at City High.
“I think it was really important for us to come back tonight and get a win,” Law said. “After the tournament on Saturday we had a lot of reflection and we only had one practice to kind of switch the mood so we worked a lot on what we could learn from that and how we could move on from that.
Law had at least kills in all three sets as City High improved to 3-5 on the season and 1-1 in Mississippi Valley Conference Mississippi Division play.
Mia Loughran added nine kills and three ace serves to help City High hold a 35-20 edge in kills.
“With Kelsey we have a lot more offensive power and we can kind of distribute to our hitters even more and be more versatile,” City High coach Tricia Carty said. “We started to show some signs of being able to move some people around and hit some different sets that we haven’t really done yet this year. It’s nice to have even more options.”
After back-to-back wins to open the season City High lost its next five matches, four coming to ranked opponents.
The final four losses of the five-match losing skid came on Saturday at the Little Hawk’s home tournament.
It didn’t take long for City High to get back on track on Tuesday.
“We had a tough weekend,” Carty said. “A lot of things didn’t go the way we wanted to and its hard to bounce back especially with only one day to put in a new lineup so I was really happy with the way they adjusted and took care of business in the first time they have played out there as that unit.”
City High built an early 8-3 lead in the opening set behind a pair of kills and an ace serve from Law.
The Little Hawks then broke things open with a 6-1 run that gave them a 20-10 lead.
Law Had three kills during the 6-1 burst.
“It felt really good, I was waiting for this moment for a while,” Law said. “I still felt like I had to prove my spot again. I knew that everyone earns their spot, there are no guarantees so I was pretty nervous.”
City High led 11-10 in the second set before using a 9-0 run to take control.
Loughran had three kills during the 9-0 spurt that featured an ace serve from sophomore setter Makayla Ribble.
“Over the weekend we didn’t cooperate as a team, we were more little islands going off and just hoping to come together,” Ribble said. “Tonight we brought a lot more energy.”
City High needed a late rally in the third set to complete the sweep.
Cedar Rapids Washington held leads of 7-3 and 10-8 before the Little Hawks got rolling.
A 7-1 run fueled by three Loughran ace serves gave City High an 18-14 advantage it would never give up.
Cedar Rapids Washington got as close as 23-22 with a 4-0 burst capped by a Delaney Redmond kill but Law put the match away with back-to-back kills.
The senior had seven of her 17 kills in the final set.
“We are adding another strong hitter and that makes us that much stronger all around,” Ribble said. “We have a lot of strong hitters and Kelsey just makes us better.”
Lindsey Bolton 1-3-0, CeCe Aldrigh-Ingram 1-0-0, Joslyn Becker 2-0-0, Kelsey Law 17-1-0, Alia Vanderhoef 2-0-1, Mia Loughran 9-3-0, Makayla Ribble 0-1-0, Emma Nugent 3-0-1, Team 35-8-2.
Assists – Makayla Ribble 20, Lindsey Bolton 9
Keara Powers 1-0-0, Hannah Stuelke 7-0-0, Markea Jackson 4-0-0, Delaney Redmond 4-0-1, Amya Taylor 0-2-0, Luciana O’Donnell 1-1-0, Orianna Crusoe 3-0-0, Team 20-3-1.
Assists – Lydia Jackson 14
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