Pine River volleyball stops Reed City

LEROY — It was a nonconference volleyball match, but Reed City and Pine River went at each other hard Thursday night with the Bucks carving out the 3-1 victory.

Pine River took the opening game 25-20 and Reed City evened it up with a 26-24 win. The Bucks won the next two 25-22, 27-25.

“I thought the kids played really solid defensively,” Reed City coach Don Patterson said. “We scrapped, we clawed. We served a little better. We’re still right there. We showed heart by coming back in every game.”

Reed City is 5-14.

“Playing Reed City is always a fun match for us,” Pine River coach Jana Dennis said. “They’re an old-time rival. We kind of struggled on Tuesday so it was good to see us come out with fire and intensity.”

Julie Justin’s kill ended the first game for Pine River. Liza Emington served two straight for the Coyotes in the second game for a 23-21 lead. The Bucks tied it 24-24, but a kill and block by Alexis VanEck gave the coyotes the 26-24 win.

Sidni Rushford’s block gave Reed City a 13-11 lead in the second game. The Bucks later took control and Justin served the final two points for the 25-22 win. KayLee Goodman had a kill for the winning point.

The Bucks continued to dominate in the fourth game and seemed ready to win with a 24-19 lead. But the Coyotes served five straight points including an ace from Megan Donley. The Coyotes had a 25-24 lead but the Bucks scored the next three points.

“Pine River does a good job,” Patterson said. “They bring a lot of heat, especially the outside hitters. It took a little bit for our rights and middles to get over and adjust to that hard angle they were hitting. I thought Meghan Borst did a really good job adjusting to it. She had quite a lot of blocks.”

For the Bucks, Kierra Justin had eight kills; Kyla Johnson contributed seven kills and 18 digs; Justin had nine kills and 10 digs; Goodman had seven kills and 13 digs; Chelsey TerBurgh had 31 digs, while Tailor Charles added 21 digs.

“We just stayed focused and remembered what our goal was for the night,” Dennis said. “Our goal was to win and work as a team and communicate. That’s what we had to do. It’s always nice against a team down the road from us to get a win.”

For the Coyotes, Hannah Price had four kills and 23 digs; Ally Yarger contributed five kills and 15 digs; Donley was credited with seven kills, five aces, one block and 17 digs; Emington contributed three kills, 15 digs and 13 assists; Borst had six kills, five blocks and three digs; VanEck had a kill and block; Jordyn Storch collected two aces, 12 digs and 13 assists, Rushford had four digs and Alyssa Olds had 12 digs.

“We weren’t as intense as we were when we got the win at Lakeview (Monday night),” Price said. “We talked a lot more. We’ve gotten better every time we’ve played. We’re still making progress.”