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Morgan volleyball falls short

Morgans fell just short of a chance to play for a state volleyball championship after a 3-2 match loss to Kingwood on Saturday at Faulkner University.

Morgan got off to a hot start in game 1 by taking an early 10-6 lead.

Dee Griffin served Morgan to an 11-8 lead, but Kingwood chipped away to force a tie at 15-all.

The Senators couldn’t break serve, and Kingwood scored seven unanswered points to take a 22-15 lead.

Mary Peyton Zimmerman served to get Morgan close at 22-18, and Catherine Armstrong brought Morgan closer with three serves to cut the deficit to 23-22. But Morgan came up just short, falling 25-23.

The Lions broke a 10-10 tie in game 2 then pulled away.

Morgan fought back with a nice save by Summer Pugh and a block by Anne Woodruff to cut the score to 16-12 before the Lions went on a 9-0 run to win 25-12.

Game 3 started in much the same way with the score changing hands often. Kasey Green served to make the score 20-17, supported by a Sarah Hughey kill. Kingwood pulled back to tie the game at 20 but lost serve. At that point, Dee Griffin served four straight points for the win to force game 4.

Game 4 was tight as well, with the score staying tied until 8 when Woodruff had another kill and Pugh earned another save. April Clark earned a kill to put Morgan up 16-11.

Armstrong served three straight to make the score 23-18, and Griffin sealed the win from the service line and force a fifth game.

But Kingwood controlled the deciding game from the get go, jumping ahead 6-2 with the first two service rotations and not looking back en route to a 15-7 win.

“Even after a season-ending loss, we still had a very successful season,” said coach Jennifer Moore. “The girls played hard all season and never gave up. I am proud of those girls and honored to have been a part of their journey.”

April Clark earned all-tournament honors with nine kills and six solo blocks. Armstrong also had nine kills, followed by Sarah Hughey with seven. Griffin had 26 digs followed by Kasey Green with 16 digs. Pugh added 22 assists, Woodruff had five digs and three kills, and Zimmerman had six digs and four kills.