Whetstone Roundup: Volleyball team played with sense of urgency

Stephen Borgna
ThisWeek group
Senior right-side hitter Grace Brigle helped Whetstone go 16-1 overall and 12-0 in the City League-North Division. The Braves lost the league championship match to Africentric, falling 25-18, 18-25, 25-27, 25-20, 15-11 on Nov. 11 at home.

The Whetstone girls volleyball team experienced a lot of success leading up to the City League championship match, but fell short of its ultimate goal of winning the title.

The Braves lost to visiting Africentric 25-18, 18-25, 25-27, 25-20, 15-11 on Nov. 11. The Nubians won their second consecutive league title.

Whetstone finished 16-1 overall after going 12-0 to win the City-North Division. The Braves played only league opponents this fall because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

After the regular season, City teams competed in a league tournament rather than the OHSAA postseason. To reach the championship match, the Braves defeated Marion-Franklin (25-4, 25-5, 25-13 on Nov. 2), Walnut Ridge (25-18, 25-11, 25-18 on Nov. 4) and Eastmoor Academy (25-21, 25-18, 15-25, 25-15 on Nov. 9).

Coach Chelsea Ray said she was proud of what the Braves accomplished during less than ideal circumstances.

“We just approached this season as playing every single game like it was our last and not taking any second for granted,” she said. “They really played together.”

Ray credited the leadership of the senior class as a significant factor in the Braves' success. Those seniors include Megan Harrison (setter/outside hitter), Macy Staggs (middle hitter), Grace Brigle (right-side hitter), Ryleigh Elicker (defensive specialist), Sadie Hannah (defensive specialist), Julianna May (right-side hitter/defensive specialist) and Caitlyn McDaniel (defensive specialist). 

“The chemistry they have is undeniable, and they were definitely able to use that to their advantage in their matches,” Ray said.  I’ve been so impressed with them this year. I’m very proud of how they’ve played, not only talent-wise but also how they’ve come together and played for each other and persisted through this season.” 

Expected key returnees include juniors Alivia Brello (defensive specialist), Ellen Edwards (outside hitter), Sierra Peterson (outside hitter) and Addy Worden (right-side hitter).

sborgna@thisweeknews.com

@ThisWeekSteve