#1 Yorktown ends Bellmont's stellar season
Madalyn Mann in sectional play at Norwell. (Photo by Deb Shannon)
YORKTOWN—For the second time in less than a week, a Yorktown Tiger team ousted a Bellmont squad from IHSAA post season tournament play as Tuesday night the number one rated Tigers knocked off the number two Squaws in the regional by a 25-18, 25-16, 21-25, 25-20 count.
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Yorktown also defeated Bellmont in football last Friday by a 31-20 score.
With the exception of a fairly well played third game and a strong period late in game four by the Squaws, the night clearly belonged to Yorktown which now advances to the IHSAA semi-state Saturday at Plymouth to play Gary Andrean (27-7), which easily beat Griffith in three games to move on.
"I told the girls they had to come in here tonight ready to play but Yorktown had six girls playing hard all the time and it seemed like we hard three or four. We simply got outplayed and when you fall behind in a game by four or five points to a team like Yorktown, you're probably going to lose that game," noted Bellmont coach Craig Krull after the game.
Krull said "Yorktown is a very athletic team and took us out of what we wanted to do. We weren't able to handle their passing and serving early and that really hurt in the first two games. Passing is the first thing you do and they were firing bullets at us. We didn't react fast enough on some of the plays and that put us in positions where they were able to hit some open shots."
Time and time again in the opening two games, it appeared Bellmont had the corners of the floor and front line adequately covered but Yorktown repeatedly seized on the opportunity to hit the middle of the floor with shots that diving Bellmont defenders could not make plays on.
Bellmont led early in the first game 3-1 after a Rachel Salerno ace but the match was then tied on four occasions at 3,4, 5, and 7. Yorktown's Karli Acree nailed in a kill for an 8-7 lead and the Tigers never trailed again in the first game. Bellmont's Audrey Schultz had a tip kill to cut the game to 9-8 but the next time Yorktown came up for a breath they had ripped off six straight points on a Bellmont service error, an ace by Acree and kills by four different Tigers.
Bellmont never really recovered from that run and although they did get the score to within four on at 18-14 (after trailing 17-9), Acree came up big late with a kill and ace to end the game.
The Squaws appeared to come out in game two with some new life getting their first three points of the game on kills, including an opening block kill by Holly Hankenson, and when Taylor Rhymer ripped a kill down the sideline, the Squaws were up 5-2. Nikki Box responded with two kills for Yorktown later tie it at 6-6 and an illegal lift call on the Squaws again put the Tigers in the lead for good for the rest of game two.