Santa Fe, the defending Class 1 Missouri State volleyball champions, defeated Sacred Heart in two sets Wednesday to claim the District 11 tournament at Crest Ridge High School in Centerview.
Sadie Limback, who tallied nine kills in the first set, led the Lady Chiefs to a 25-20, 25-13 victory over the Lady Gremlins, its second of the season.
“They’ve got a real good ball club,” said Lady Gremlins Head Coach David Fall. “We knew they were going to get their hits, and they got them. Our goal was to get up as high as we could and slow them down.”
Limback finished with 14 kills on the match.
Sacred Heart trailed 7-1 in the first set before Fall called time out. A pair of kills from Anna Callis and Madison McClain brought the Lady Gremlins within six points. Santa Fe called timeout with a 16-11 lead.
The Lady Gremlins back line endured three Limback swings in one rally before she registered Santa Fe’s 19th point. Sacred Heart called its second timeout down 12-21. Addyson Wright was just short of the game-saving dig, and Santa Fe led one set to none.
Santa Fe trailed early, but led 9-5 in set two after a 4-1 run. Annalise Mergen provided an assist to McClain to cut the deficit to 13-7.
Another Limback kill torpedoed across the court to push the Lady Chiefs’ lead to 18-12 and force Sacred Heart’s second timeout. Santa Fe finished set two on a 7-1 run.
Fall said despite Wednesday’s loss, the Lady Gremlin volleyball season was largely successful.
“In a couple of weeks this isn’t going to hurt as much, because they’re going to look back and see they had (22) wins, tonight it’s hard on them.
“We won the conference tournament, we got a share of the conference title … We had a lot of things to be proud of. Trying to get them convinced of that tonight is going to be tough.”
Santa Fe advances to the sectional tournament Saturday, Oct. 22 against the District 15 champion.
Alex Agueros can be reached at 660-826-1000, ext. 1483 or on Twitter @abagueros2