The Altamont Lady Indians’ season came to an end Friday evening after falling to Norris City at the IHSA Class 1A Bridgeport (Red Hill) Super-sectional 21-25, 27-25, 21-25.
“I think the game went very well,” said Altamont head coach Scott Klingler. “Both teams played very very hard. [Norris City] had a lot of big hitters. Both teams did very well.”
Altamont didn’t come out of the gate well, allowing Norris City to get out to a 7-1 lead with the help of a pair of kills from Norris City’s Emilee Bishop and three aces from Tori Karnes.
But after an error from the Cardinals, that seemed to put the Indians in gear, getting a kill and a block from Rachel Jackman to cut the Altamont deficit to two at 7-5.
Two more kills and a block from Jackman, as well as an ace from Kassidy Pemberton to tie things at nine.
A kill and block from freshman Hollan Everett put the Cardinals up two, but a kill from Ellie McManaway cut the deficit back to one.
But after that, the Cardinals went on a 5-0 run with kills from Bishop and Evie Duncan, with three errors by the Indians to put Altamont down 17-11.
Brooke Runge came up with a kill as did Pemberton following a Norris City violation to make it 17-14, but Norris City’s Bishop had two kills and a block to go up 20-14.
After a pair of Altamont errors put the Cardinals up 22-15, the Lady Indians made a run, with two kills from Jackman and one from Ada Tappendorf, as well as a two errors to come back within a point at 22-21.
But the Cardinals responded with three-straight points on a kill from Duncan, an ace from Mattie Wells made it 24-21 with Everett earning the set-winning kill 25-21.
“I think there were a lot of jitters,” Klinlger said. “There were some unforced errors.”
The start of the second set couldn’t have been more opposite for the Lady Indians, jumping out to a 5-0, starting with two kills from Pemberton, an ace from Taylor Mette and a block from Runge.
After a kill from Pemberton and a pair of kills from Jackman, Norris City cut the Lady Indians lead to two after a kill from Bishop and block from Everett.
“Rachel did very well,” Klingler said. “She stepped up and did very well for the team.
But the Lady Indians were able to extend the lead back to seven behind a pair of errors by the Cardinals and kills from Pemberton and Mette. However, the Cardinals put together a run of their own with aces from Bishop and Abby Black.
A serving error gave the Indians a 22-21 lead before a big block at the net from Runge gave the Lady Indians a two-point lead. But two consecutive errors neutralized the progress and after Altamont was called for being under the net, gave Norris City a 24-23 lead to give the Cardinals a match-point opportunity.
The Cardinals had a hitting error to tie the set at 24 and an ace from Tappendorf put Altamont up one. A kill from Everett tied the set back up at 25. Mette put the Indians up one and a kill from Runge gave the Lady Indians the set win to tie at one set apiece.
“After the first set, I said we’re going to leaving it all on the court,” Klingler said. “They started talking and doing a little bit better. I think we just ran out of steam.”
Momentum had seemed to carry over into the third set as the Lady Indians started on a 4-1 run with an ace from Mette and kill from Runge, as well as a kill from Pemberton.
The Cardinals were able to tie the set at six after three errors from the Lady Indians and kills from Bishop and Everett.
Altamont was able to hold onto the lead until two straight errors and a serving error set up Everett for a set tying block to make it 14-14.
Mette came up with back-to-back kills before Everett responded with a block, coupled with an Altamont error to tie the set at 17. The Cardinals were able to take a three-point lead at 21-18 before Runge and Jackman came up with a pair of kills and a lift violation for the Cardinals to tie the set at 21.
But senior outside hitter Bishop came up with two-straight kills to set up match point for the Cardinals at 24-21 and earned the final point after a hitting error went out of the back of the court to advance the Cardinals to state.
“On and off the court, they’re great individuals, great players and great athletes,” said Klingler.
The Lady Indians end the season at 31-8-1.