September 18, 2016 Bulldog sports round-up
- Published: September 15, 2016
Fall sports are now in full swing (or would that be full serve?), and the Bulldogs continue to deliver their patented brand of athletic prowess and cutthroat sporting drama. This fall’s schedule is full of games — to the tune of four or more per week, for some sports — so rabid Bulldogs supporters are sure to be able to get their fix of competition in the increasingly crisp fall air.
On Sept. 8, the Bulldogs traveled to Legacy Christian (formerly Xenia Christian) on Sept. 8 for their first conference match of the season. With no air conditioning and very little air circulating in the gym, the Bulldogs wasted no time in punishing the Knights for the stifling conditions. Every Bulldog player contributed to the win either with great serves or vicious kills — or both. In the first set the Bulldogs allowed the Knights only three earned points, winning 25–10. The second set went even worse for the Knights as Yellow Springs allowed only three of their players to serve the ball, earning only two points and finishing with a score of 25–5. The third set saw juniors Nia Stewart, Kelsie Lemons and Dede Cheatom take the floor to finish off the Knights. The last set ended with a score of 25–13. Smith led the Bulldogs with 20 points, 6 aces, 10 kills and 6 digs, followed by Kasey Linkhart with 9 points, 20 assists, 2 blocks, 1 kill and 3 digs, Tyler Linkhart had 5 points, 3 aces, 10 kills, 10 assists, 1 block and 9 digs; sophomore Alex Ronnebaum contributed 6 points, 1 ace, 7 kills and 2 blocks. Kegley and junior Elle Peifer and each had 6 points each, with 1 ace, while Kegley also dug up 16 of the Knights hits.
With little time to rest, the Bulldogs welcomed the Stivers Tigers in a nonconference matchup on Sept. 9. The JV Bulldogs won in two sets, 25–23 and 25–8. The team’s defensive efforts were led by Junior Elly Kumbusky who had 11 digs. The first set was close, but the serving of junior Nia Stewart, who racked up 7 aces, was too much for Stivers. The freshmen came to play and to conquer, with Julia Hoff scoring 3 kills, Jane Meister scoring 2 kills and Olivia Snoddy scoring 3 aces.
The varsity Tigers came ready to play and took the early lead in all three sets. They won, 25–14, 25–16 and 25–15. Amazing serves by Tyler Linkhart (18 points, 7 aces, 3 kills, 8 assists, 10 digs, 2 blocks) and Peifer (13 points, 2 aces, 4 kills, 6 digs) showed the Tigers that the Bulldogs meant — and will always mean — business. The second set had the Tigers taking a 2–10 lead by serving up low fast balls that the Bulldogs were having trouble receiving. But a kill by Ronnebaum gave the Bulldogs the side out they needed. Tyler Linkhart was sent back in to serve, where she served up 9 straight points (6 aces) to bring Yellow Springs back into the game. A miscommunication between setter and hitter allowed the Tigers to take back the serve, but not for long as Ronnebaum bashed down another kill to send Peifer back to the service line. Peifer served up 5 of her 13 points on the night in the second set. She went on to earn her other 8 points in the third set. Even though the Bulldogs had control of the third set, the Tigers refused to back down and kept fighting for every opportunity to stay in the game. But the Bulldogs prevailed, with contributions by Smith who had 8 points, 6 aces, 6 kills and 15 digs; Kasey Linkhart with 5 points, 20 assists and 4 digs; and Ronnebaum with 4 points, 3 aces, 1 assist and 2 blocks. Kegley gave 5 points, 2 aces and 20 digs, and Julian Roberts had 4 kills, 2 assists and 2 blocks.
The Bulldogs are now 6–2 (1–0) on the season.