The Bickleton Pirates came down from the hills last Friday with one thing on their minds, beat Sunnyside Christian in volleyball.
They might have succeeded except for thing, they were just outclassed by the Lady Knights. Still, the Lady Pirates came stubbonly close in each of the three games, losing 25-22, 25-21 and 25-18. Bickleton employed a questionable tactic during the game. When a Lady Knight was serving, a Bickleton player or players would scream "What's Up?" to try and disrupt the server. A ploy that didn't work as the Lady Knights ignored the taunts and won the match.
"They were fairly strong in serving and had a couple of strong hitters," Bickleton Coach Tom Whitmore said. "Our play was fun because all of our girls passed the ball very well to help us have some offense. We need to improve on our serving, yet we are improving."
SCHS Coach Tammy Bangs said she was much happier with her team's performance in this match but admitted there were still some things that still needed to be worked on.
On the Bickleton side, Katelynn Clinton had several blocks for the Pirates and Morgan McBride did an outstanding job setting the ball, according to Whitmore.
For SCHS, Andrea Schutt was 8-for-10 on her serves with one ace, six kills and 14 perfect passes. Abby Bangs had three digs and 13 assists. Melanie Van Wingerden was 7-for-7 on her serving and had eight kills and seven perfect passes. Joleen Van Wingerden was 13-for 16 on her serves with one ace, two kills and nine perfect passes. Hilari Bosma went 12-for-14 on her serving, including 11 perfect passes. Kelly Newhouse had two kills and Ashley Haak was 15-for-16 on her serves with two aces.
The Lady Knights then traveled to Burbank on Saturday to compete in the Columbia/Burbank Invite. SCHS played against three teams there, starting with Wahluke, which they beat 26-24 and 26-24.
"We had a slow start in the morning with Wahluke," Bangs said. "We were still working out some kinks in our defense, but we did manage to pull out the win."
Against Burbank, the Lady Knights lost 25-15 and 25-13.
"We played a tough game against Burbank," Bangs said. "They are a very strong team and I was pleased with how well the girls stepped it up and worked hard. We didn't come out with a win, but I told the girls I was happy with the improvement they showed. We were not making those simple errors."
In the third match, the Lady Knights played Touchet and beat them in three, 25-22, 21-25 and 15-10.
"We were very tired by the time the Touchet game rolled around," Bangs added. "The girls did excellent working through the fatigue and pulling out a win. I was very happy with the performance at this tournament. We finished third overall and came out of it with a lot learned. I couldn't ask for more."
Schutt had 20 kills, eight blocks and 21 perfect passes in the tournament. Abby Bangs finished serving 33-for-33, with five digs and 34 assists. Melanie Van Wingerden had 14 kills, three blocks, two digs and 13 perfect passes.
SCHS (1-0, 3-2) will next travel to play LaSalle Tuesday, Sept. 11.
Bickleton (0-1, 1-1) will travel to Sunnyside today, Sept. 10, to take on the Grizzlies' C squad.