Smith-Cotton had a difficult time finding a rhythm in Thursday’s season-opener against Odessa, but the Lady Tigers put together enough runs to win 21-25, 25-10, 25-23.
The Lady Tigers and Lady Bulldogs went down to the wire in the third set. Odessa took a 23-21 lead, but S-C scored the final four to take the match.
Courtney Koetting got the four-point run started by using two hands to push the ball over. Montana Hedrick tallied the final point for S-C.
“She really stepped up (Thursday),” said head coach Darcia Koetting. “Montana is a super athlete.”
It was a pass from Courtney Koetting to Hedrick that started a 7-0 run to start the first set. Odessa mistakes and a couple Courtney Koetting aces led to the run.
But the Lady Bulldogs slowly climbed back in and took a 16-15 lead after a Corryn Steinbeck kill.
“We just let the lead slip away with errors, so I was really proud for them fighting through that,” Darcia Koetting said. “I thought we ran some really complicated plays and some of those didn’t fall because I felt we were really pushing running a shorter, tighter ball. I think in the future that’s going to pay off as we practice.”
Neither team would have a larger lead than two until Morgan Kloeppel got a kill to give Odessa a 23-20 lead. A hit out of bounds ended up giving Odessa a 25-21 win in set one.
The Lady Tigers were able to get into more of a rhythm in the second set, going on an 8-0 run at one point.
An Odessa kill got the Lady Bulldogs within 6-4, but Courtney Koetting set up Bailey Curry for a kill to start the 8-0 run.
Tori Jacobi later set up Courtney Koetting for a kill and Curry made it 13-4 with a block. An S-C hit into the net stopped the run.
Jacobi would set to Courtney Koetting twice more in the set on the way to a 25-10 win to force a third set.
Hedrick, Courtney Koetting and Curry led the attack in the third set.
Jacobi set up Hedrick for a kill to start the set and Courtney Koetting made it 3-0 with two straight aces.
Curry got a kill to make it 6-6 and tied it up again at 9-9 by pushing the ball over the net. She had two straight aces to make it 12-9.
“As a team, we really stepped up (Thursday),” Darcia Koetting said.
The Smith-Cotton JV picked up a win, taking the match in two sets 25-21, 25-23.
Smith-Cotton will host Jefferson City on Monday.
Jason Strickland can be reached at 660-530-0147 or on Twitter @J_Strick_Sports.