Derby volleyball tops Maize South
GODDARD Derby junior Kenzie Holcomb celebrates every stuff block. There’s just something so exhilarating about blocking a hit and seeing it land on the other side of the net for a point.
When Holcomb blocked Maize South senior Jody Larson on the match’s third point, well, there was no shame in taking extra pleasure in that. After all, Larson is a two-time All-Metro selection who has made an oral commitment to play volleyball at Oklahoma.
Derby used its strong net play to sweep Maize South 25-18, 25-15 and improve to 6-2.
“That was my whole game plan for the game, to block Jody Larson and get her out of her game,” Holcomb said. “…. (Blocks) set the momentum for the whole entire game, and you just want it more and more and more.”
The Panthers were led by Holcomb’s four stuff blocks and four kills. McKenzie Brown added four kills in the match, while Rebekah Spainhour and Tori Miller had three each.
Larson, who is suffering from an injury to her sacroiliac joint, was playing in pain and wasn’t her normal power-hitting self. She didn’t play in the second set against Derby or in Maize South’s 25-22, 18-25, 25-19 win over Goddard.
“We’ve just got to rest it,” said Maize South coach Teri Larson, Jody’s mother. “It’s hard as a mom, hard as a coach. You just want to do the right thing.”
Maize South is 5-3, while Goddard is 1-7.
“It is a good win,” Derby coach Shelby Kraus said. “And it was nice that Jody wasn’t playing in the second (set). It was a huge difference for them.”
While Maize South has been hit with multiple injuries, including a concussion suffered by hitter Emily Keller, Derby played well.
The Panthers forced Maize South into unforced errors and took control with its aggressive net play. Derby had shown such play during a tournament Saturday when Spainhour had 24 stuff blocks in six matches.
“I would rather see us win 30 percent of our points on blocks and the rest on offense,” Kraus said. “It makes you more of a well-rounded team.”