DANBURY – This season’s edition of North and South Stokes volleyball as a different twist to it. It’s coach going up against a former player. The Sauras’ coach Megan Condon took round one against her mentor Kierston Garner with a tough 3-1 road win in the Northwest 1A Conference. Condon credits teamwork and hype for being keys to the victory.
“This is a match that I’ve been waiting for, not because of the rivalry, but because of where I used to play for KG (Garner),” said Condon. “She’s been a big role model in my life as a player to coach and it was fun coaching against my coach.
“It was a tight match at times, but overall, I believe South Stokes is on a comeback one step at a time.”
The Vikings used nine hitting errors by the Sauras and had some timely hitting by its’ front line and blocks by Rachel Bingman and Leigha Wyrick to springboard the home team to a 25-21 win in the first set.
North jumped out of the gate in set two behind some hard hitting and took a 12-6 lead and looked as if was going to take the second game, but then a diving play by Sydney Patterson allowed the Sauras to stay alive on the point and eventually scoring drawing them to within 12-7.
Addison Flynt served four consecutive balls with Aleigh Williams and Madison Wilson scoring kills and Flynt adding an ace to come within 12-10. The Sauras didn’t take its’ first lead of the set until the score was 22-21. Rebecca Amos scored an ace making it 23-21, but a block by Wyrick gave the home crowd something to cheer about. With North serving, a hitting error by the Vikings made the score 24-22, but then Flynt sealed the deal with an ace giving South the 25-22 win in set two.
The Sauras dominated set three 25-13 and then duplicated it in the fourth winning 25-14.
“While every county rivalry games comes with a winner and loser, tonight most people, including myself, were bought in to every play,” said Garner. “Sure, I wanted the W in my win column but there’s always work to be done. Time to prepare for the second cycle through conference play. I’m still proud of my girls, no matter the outcome.”
Flynt led the Sauras with 36 assists, Sydney Mounce had 16 kills, and Patterson and Tatumn Brim led the team with 14 and 18 digs. Freshman Oliva Amos had five of the Sauras 13 aces in the game.
Kinley Mabe had 20 assists for the Vikings with Lexie Knight and Rachel Bingman scoring seven attacks each. Caroline Mabe had 13 digs and Bingman finished with four blocks.
The Sauras are now 4-9 overall and 2-4 in conference play with a three game winning streak. South beat non-conference Millennium 25-14, 25-20, 25-12 on Monday and then turned around and beat conference foe Elkin (5-8, 3-3) 25-23, 20-25, 25-23, 13-25, and 15-13. South will host Alleghany (10-3, 5-1) on Thursday at 7 p.m.
North Stokes is 4-9 overall and 0-6 in league play. The Vikings will travel to West Stokes on Wednesday and then host Elkin on Thursday.
Robert Money can be reached at 336-749-1193.