MORGAN CITY — Morgan City High School had Central Catholic right where they wanted them.
After CCHS jumped out to an 8-1 lead on the Lady Tigers in game 1 of their contest Thursday, Morgan City rallied with a 8-2 run to cut the Lady Eagles advantage to 10-9.
Unfortunately for Morgan City, Central Catholic woke up, outscoring Morgan City 15-4 the rest of the way, and Morgan City never seemed to be able to recover as CCHS won the three-game match, 25-13, 25-10, 25-11 in a battle of neighborhood rivals at CCHS Thursday.
“I think we kind of controlled tempo throughout the course of the game,” CCHS coach Kindra Halverson said. “We had good, aggressive serves to start out with so that caused some trouble with their passing. Our girls played hard the whole time and they didn’t let up, which I was really excited about. Keeping the score a constant 10, 11 points was our goal. We wanted to keep constant play. Even trying new lineups, the score didn’t change so I was excited with all of our subs being able to get in and get some experience against a good team and our parish rival.”
In Game 1, Central Catholic used Morgan City errors as well as the net play of Brie Hill to jump out to an 8-1 lead. Hill had two kills and a block in the run.
After Morgan City finally broke the Lady Eagles’ serve, Morgan City began to rally using a combination of CCHS errors, back-to-back aces by Marilynn Bailey and consecutive kills by May Grogan, who has become more of a factor for the Lady Tigers’ offense recently.
The second of consecutive Grogan kills cut the MCHS deficit to one at 10-9.
“They caused some trouble,” Halverson said. “They had some big blockers over there. … They had some really aggressive servers, too, so that caused some trouble.”
Soon, though, CCHS began to pull away, using a combination of Morgan City errors to take game one.
During the run, CCHS’ Caroline Byrne connected on three consecutive aces to push the CCHS lead to 20-11.
CCHS closed out game one on Morgan City’s Savannah Loupe’s service error.
“We have to control what we (can) control,” MCHS coach Christy Theriot said. “We have to make our serves, we have to be able to pass the ball, especially on serve receive and we have to cut down on our hitting errors. That’s a point for them every time. They hit well. Some of them there’s not much you can do with them. They hit well. They hit hard.”
In game 2, Central Catholic jumped out early and never looked back. Already ahead 12-3 via a Meo Knight kill, the Lady Eagles led by seven or more points the rest of the way to take the second game.
CCHS was powered in the game two win by its net play as well as its serving.
In game three, CCHS again jumped out to an 8-2 lead and never was threatened.
The Lady Eagles recorded 30 kills on 60 attack attempts with just six attack errors in the match.
Despite the loss, Theriot said she was proud of her squad’s efforts.
“I thought they played hard. Central played really well,” she said.
Hill and Knight led CCHS as Hill recorded 13 kills, three solo blocks and a block assist, while Knight recorded 11 kills, an assist, a solo block, two digs and two block assists. Other Lady Eagle contributors included Byrne, 27 assists, four aces and a dig; Abbie Bergeron, two aces and 12 digs; Celine Flores, four kills, an ace and eight digs; and Gee Garrett, two kills and three solo blocks.
Katelyn Adams led Morgan City with eight assists, three digs, two kills and an ace, while Grogan and Javieanna Jones each contributed six kills, with Grogan recording two digs and Jones, a dig. Kloé Liner added eight digs and two kills.
In junior varsity action, Morgan City fell 10-25, 18-25.
Grogan led MCHS with three kills and a dig, while Alexandra Thompson added four digs and a kill. Other MCHS contributors included Tyler Hebert, three kills; Brandi Ingram, a kill and three digs; Bailey, five digs; and Taylor Prince, six assists.
In freshman action, MCHS fell 8-25, 17-25.
Central Catholic will return to action Tuesday when it opens district play against West St. John at home. Junior varsity action will begin at 5 p.m. followed by varsity play.
Morgan City also will resume district play Tuesday when it hosts South Lafourche. Action will begin with freshman play at 4 p.m., followed by junior varsity and varsity contests.