By Chuck Reherman
Down two sets, Yukon looked to used some “Miller Magic” to make another comeback win.
The Millerettes got within striking distance, but came up on the short end to Southmoore in four sets Tuesday night on Senior Night at the YHS gym.
Down 2-0 in sets, the Millerettes won the third set 26-24 and led by as many as four in the fourth set. Southmoore put together a late run and took the set 25-23 to win the match.
The Lady Sabercats won the first set 25-17 and took the second 25-21.
“The second half of the third set wasn’t bad, but we had already dug ourselves into a hole,” Millerette coach Rachel Allred said. “And, it is hard to dig yourself out of hole when you got youself in there.
“We did have a chance in the fourth set, we just couldn’t get that last edge,” she said. “We had some key missed serves and the first two sets we really struggled in serve-receive. That is something we have been working on, that is just a mentality and the last few games that has been off. It’s a matter of a getting the confidence back to get the passes there in serve-receive.
“We missed serves early in match and once we got on in our serve-receive in the third and fourth, we fell off in other things. Our hitting started to struggle a little bit and being smart with second touch struggled. We got one piece working and another fell off. We couldn’t get all the wheels working at the same time.”
Down 2-0 in sets, the Millerettes kept the third set close and used kills from Addie Wimmer and Bri Worth to take a 9-6 lead. Southmoore came back to take an 11-9 lead and pushed that margin to 15-12, then 18-14.
An ace from Katelyn Biswell and a block from Katie Clark cut the lead to 18-16. Southmoore had a double hit, then hit into the net to bring the Millerettes within one, 19-18.
A Worth kill tied the set 21-21. Tied at 23-23, Wimmer scored a kill to put YHS up 24-23. Tied at 24-24, Southmoore hit into the net again and a kill from Worth scored the set winner, 26-24.
The Millers used a Worth kill to take a 5-4 lead in the fourth set and a kill from Kaylee Coleman pushed the lead to 12-9. A Biswell ace opened a 14-10 lead.
Clark blocked a Southmoore shot for a score, Wimmer had three kills and Worth another to make it 19-16.
Southmoore, though, scored four points in a row to regain the lead 20-19. A kill from Worth gave the Millerettes a 22-21 lead, but Southmoore tied the set, the scored when a block attempt by Yukon went out of bounds for a 24-23 lead. Southmoore ended the match on a kill by Emma Upthegrove to win the match.
“We have three more games left before playoffs and every game has to teach us and make us better,” Allred said. “Tonight was a special night being senior night, we had a lot of family and friends here.
“We have to have that mental toughness from here on out,” she said. “Not just wanting to win, but wanting to win in a focused way that keeps us postive and on each other. They want it, they are really competitive and we really want it, but we internalize everything and so is just becomes that we put pressure on ourselves and each other and things fall apart instead of using that desire to fuel us more.”
In the opening set, the Millerettes did have the early lead 3-2. Southmoore reeled off four straight points to take a 6-3 lead. Blocks by Worth and Clark made it 6-5 and the match went back and forth until Southmoore opened a 15-12 lead and started to pull away. The Lady ‘Cats scored the final three points of the set to win 25-17.
The Millerettes again got off to a good start in the second set, scoring the first four points, But, Southmoore came back to tie 5-5, then reeled off five more points to take a 10-5 lead.
Yukon closed the margin to 12-10 on kills from Wimmer and Worth, who both had double digit kills on the night. Southmoore pushed the lead to 19-16, but saw YHS use two service aces from Baylie Thiel to tie the match. Kills from Worth and Clark gave Yukon tied the set 22-22, but Southmoore went on a 3-0 run to win the second set.
“We have three tests before we get to regionals,” Allred said. “Those will be three tough ones and sometimes you have to play the best of the best. That should get us readyfor regionals.
“The Millerettes return to the court on Thursday with the annual Bedlam on the Court match at Mustang. The varsity plays at 6 p.m.
The Millerettes’ final home match will be Oct. 8 with Edmond Deer Creek. The freshmen will play at 3:30 p.m. and JV a 4:30 p.m. YHS will also play a special match, a Unified team match against Putnam City. The match features three special olympic players teamed with three members of the YHS team on the court at the same time.
The varsity will play following that match.
By Chuck Reherman