Through the grand scheme of a volleyball match, two points doesn’t seem like much.
But for the Borgia volleyball Lady Knights, a pair of two-point runs secured victory in the Class 3 sectional round over Villa Duchesne, 26-24, 25-23.
Hosting the Class 3 sectional event Saturday, Borgia (29-3-1) needed all of the energy in their home gym to edge the Saints (22-12) in the second match of the day.
“We had a couple of mental slumps, but we were able to contain them to short runs and not big runs like at the beginning of the season,” said Borgia Head Coach Brad Bruns. “I think that’s how we were able to win. We were able to refocus, take charge and get done what needed to be done.”
The match was a rematch of a shootout Sept. 19 in Frontenac, which Borgia won in three games, 25-21, 21-25, 25-17.
The two squads entered Saturday’s contest with Borgia ranked first and Villa Duchesne second in the Missouri High School Volleyball Coaches Association Class 3 state poll.
Villa Duchesne, the 2011 state champion, opened the match with the first two points.
Borgia fought back and tied it at 3-3 when freshman Audrey Arand smacked down a pass which drifted too close to the net.
Villa Duchesne, led by Shane Weber, once a Washington High School assistant coach, continued to play with composure and was able to keep its edge and pulled away in the middle part of the game.
Up 10-9, Villa Duchesne went on a run with Mary Donovan smashing down a pass over the net and Amy Federer posting an ace. Hannah Cherry then gave Villa Duchesne its biggest lead with a kill, 13-9.
Borgia fought back and tied it at 17-17 when sophomore Emma Kriete attacked the second ball, bringing the large crowd to its feet with the hit.
Kriete, who has played for Weber’s Rockwood Thunder club team, played with extra effort.
“It felt even better to beat Villa Duchesne because I knew he (Weber) was my coach before,” Kriete said. “We had to work through a lot and it just feels so good to win.”
Villa Duchesne responded and matched Borgia point for point. The Saints took the lead at 22-21 and again at 23-22 on a kill by Elizabeth Orf.
Borgia tied it on a kill by Arand, but then made an error to give the Saints game point.
After a timeout, senior Sarah Geatley and junior Jordan Kriete combined to block a Villa Duchesne attack. With junior Alivia Brinker serving, the teams played a lengthy rally which ended on a kill by Jordan Kriete to give Borgia game point.
With the first set on the line, Borgia went back to Jordan Kriete for the final kill, winning 26-24.
The second game turned into just about a carbon copy of the first one.
Borgia jumped out to the early lead with Geatley smacking down a pass which got close to the net to make it 5-2.
Borgia seemed to be cruising to victory, up 18-14, when Villa Duchesne fought back with Donovan serving.
Margaret Schroeder and Orf won a joust to tie the score at 18-18. A Borgia error gave Villa Duchesne the lead at 19-18. Donovan served an ace to make it 20-18 in favor of the Saints.
Borgia fought back. Senior Erin Hillerman tipped for a kill to make it 20-19. And Emma Kriete blasted another kill to tie it.
Schroeder pounded one off the Borgia block to give Villa Duchesne the lead, but it was the last time the Saints enjoyed the advantage in the match.
Emma Kriete smacked another kill to tie it.
The teams were tied again at 22-22 and 23-23, each time with Borgia scoring first.
The Lady Knights reached match point on a kill by Audrey Arand and won it on an error by the Saints.
Borgia hit .356 for the match, according to Borgia statistics.
Audrey Arand led the Lady Knights with 12 kills while hitting .667.
Emma Kriete was next with seven kills while hitting .571.
Jordan Kriete recorded six kills, Geatley and Hillerman each had four kills. Senior setter Janie Arand had two kills.
Janie Arand led the way with 22 assists. Brinker, Emma Kriete and junior Allie Marquart each had one assist.
Brinker was the team leader in digs with 13. Junior Molly Arand recorded 11 digs. Marquart was next with nine. Janie Arand posted seven digs, Audrey Arand and Jordan Kriete each had five, Hillerman and Emma Kriete each had two digs.
Audrey Arand, Janie Arand, Geatley and Jordan Kriete each had one block.