By Chuck Reherman, Sports Editor – BARTLESVILLE – After back-to-back losses, Yukon’s volleyball team was looking to get turned back around on the winning track.
The Bartlesville Invitational Tournament was just the thing the Millerettes needed.
Yukon rolled through their pool round then won the gold bracket to win the tournament title, Saturday evening in Bartlesville.
It was the second tournament title of the season for the Millerettes, 19-6 overall, and the second Bartlesville title in three years. YHS took third in the tournament last year.
The No. 10 ranked Millerettes won the title over the same team they beat in the championship at Carl Albert, No. 18 ranked Shawnee. This one was a much closer as Shawnee came from two sets down to make it 2-2. YHS won the first two sets, 25-22, 25-22, bit lost 25-23 in the third and 25-22 in the fourth, giving the Lady Wolves a breath of life.
But, the Millerettes, regained their focus in the fifth set and behind blocks and kills from Mallory Scott, Chloe Hartman and Brianna Worth and blocks from Logan Lay and Sunny Middleton, pulled away to win 15-10 and take the team title.
The Millerettes had reached the finals by beating the host team, Bartlesville 25-18, 20-25, 25-14, 25-16 in the semifinals.
Yukon rolled through pool play beating Bartlesville 25-14, 22-25, 25-20 and 25-11 in the first round. YHS swept Tulsa Bishop Kelly 25-19, 25-17 and 25-18 and finished up pool round play with a sweep of class 5A No. 20 Collinsville 25-6, 26-24 and 25-15.
Catherine Birkhead and Lay were both named to the All-Tournament team.
Birkhead and Hartman led the team in passer ratings for the weekend, while Scott, Middleton, Hartman and Worth led the team in kills. Middleton and Lay led the team in blocks, while Scott, Birkhead, Lay and Sidney Benge led the team in aces. Haylee Fowler averaged 31 assists per match in the tournament.
The night before the tournament, the Millerettes took No. 4 ranked Stillwater to five sets and fell 3-2.
And, that fifth set came down to one play. The teams battled back and forth and Stillwater took a 14-13 lead. On match point, the Lady Pioneers were able to send the shot past the Millerette defenders and to an open space between a pair of defenders for the game winning kill, 15-13.
The Millerettes had won the opening set 25-17, but lost the second 25-21. Stillwater went up 2-1 with a 25-14 win, but YHS battled back and forced the fifth set, 25-19.
Scott led the YHS spikers with 14 kills and 11 blocks.
“I felt we played a good match,” Millerette coach Rachel Allred said. “Stillwater is the No. 4 ranked team and are a very, very good team. We did a great job of bouncing back to win the fourth set and played hard in the fifth.”
The Millerettes travel to Westmoore Tuesday and Mustang Thursday in Central Oklahoma Athletic Conference matches. The freshmen play at 4 p.m., the junior varsity at 5 p.m. and the varsity at 6 p.m.