Bryant dismisses Alma in three sets

ALMA — After overwhelming the Alma Airedalettes in the first game of their 7A/6A-Central Conference volleyball match Tuesday evening, the Bryant Lady Hornets withstood second-game lull on the way to a straight-set victory, 25-10, 25-23, 25-15.

Head coach Beth Solomon was looking for a return to form for her team.

“After the way we played at Benton (on Monday), I told the girls on the way up to Alma, that we had to play our game,” she related. “We like a fast-paced game. And it seems like whenever we let the game slow down or play an opponent that doesn’t play quite as fast as we do, we tend to not play as well.

“So going into tonight,” she continued, “we told the girls, ‘You know, we’ve got this longer road trip. Let’s get up there. Let’s get things taken care of, play our game, keep the game moving at our pace that we like, and head home.’”

Bryant also won the junior varsity match, rallying after losing the first set, 24-26, 25-14, 15-10.

“We get up there and the JV ended up going three but pulled off a good win,” Solomon noted. “And in the varsity game, for some reason, in the second game we just basically quit playing. We got down seven points in the second game then turned around and got ourselves out of it. That’s good that we have a team that can do that but we never should have been in that situation to begin with. Then we took care of game three.

“The girls played well overall with the travel,” she said. “We’ve got a big game at home Thursday night. Hopefully, we’ll have a big turnout, a lot of fan support there to help us pull off our next conference win of the second round of conference play.”

The Lady Hornets, now 17-4 overall and 6-2 in the league, host Siloam Springs on Thursday.

In Tuesday’s match, the Bryant varsity needed just eight digs as Alma struggled with its attacks. Shayla McKissock, Britney Sahlmann and Savannah Shelton each had two.

The Lady Hornets were good on 65 of 72 serves with eight aces. Shelton was good on all 16 of her serves with two aces. Kaci Squires was 10 for 10 with two aces and Allie Anderson had two aces as well. Sahlmann was 12 for 13 with an ace while Whitney Brown finished 8 of 9 with an ace.

At the net, Anderson struck for 20 kills and Raven Loveless had 10 as the team accumulated 42 overall. Anderson also had two solo blocks and Loveless one. Kendall Selig, Alex Dillard and Brittney Warner contributed three kills each. Sahlmann had two with a block while setting for 28 assists. Jad’n Nichols added a kill as well.

In the JV match, the Lady Hornets (8-3) served for 16 aces led by Reagan Blend with six as she got in 14 of her 16 serves. Ashlyn Lee finished with four aces on 8 of 10 serves and Gabbie Bonvillain pitched in with three aces while getting in 10 of 12 serves.

Reagan Dabbs was good on all eight of her serves and Kyla Baker was 7 for 7 while Kasey Ward got in 9 of 11. Each had an ace as well.

Shaelyn Smith led the team with eight kills. Blend finished with four and Lee had two, while setting for 10 assists. Nichols, Bonvillain, Tori Allen and Riley Hill had kills as well. Nichols finished with three solo blocks and Hill had one.

Defensively, Baker led with four digs. Dabbs and Lee had three each, Blend and Allen two apiece.

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