Story Matters

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Thursday, October 7, 2021

Highlands Volleyball Earns 25th Victory

Bluebirds Defeat Boone County for Second Time This Season

PHOTO: G. Michael Graham, Fort Thomas Matters. Highlands senior Honor Valentine prepares to serve in a recent game.

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With a convincing 3-0 (25-15, 25-19, 25-13) win over the Boone County Lady Rebels (11-15 overall), the Highlands Bluebirds volleyball team improved to 25-6 on the season earning a fourth season of 25 or more wins in the last five seasons.

Highlands Eighth Grader Hayden Gessner watched her older sister Olivia Gessner lift the Bluebirds to consecutive 25-11 seasons in 2017 and 2018 before the 2019 team finished 29-8 overall. A Coronavirus 2019-shortened season last year left the Bluebirds at 13-8.

"We really just want to keep on with the legacy and keep bringing the energy," Hayden Gessner said. "It's just really exciting for everyone to see what we can possibly do and keep up with. It's really interesting to see what can happen during a game and how everyone is coming together as a team and making sure everyone has each others' backs."

The Bluebirds connected for 45 kills on 108 attempts with 17 errors for a .259 hitting percentage. Seniors Lauren Buemi had 16 kills with senior Avery Cavacini connecting for 10 and CC Shick adding nine.

Highlands also had 12 aces, two solo blocks, 60 digs and 45 assists. Seniors Madison Clore, Madison Opitz and Honor Valentine had three aces each and Shick had two. Cavacini and Buemi had one solo block each. Senior Sophia Sarakatsanis had 12 digs with Clore contributing nine. Opitz and senior Nicole Ossege had eight each. Opitz also had 44 assists.

"Honestly, the first two sets were both a little flat in just kind of finding our rhythm," said Katelyn Sallee, Highlands Head Coach. "We actually did a good job though of getting a lot of people involved offensively. It's probably the most balanced we've been all season. I feel like as we progress into the postseason, we have to be sure to move the ball around so that we can beat some bigger opponents. We did that (Thursday)."

Highlands has two games left in the regular season. The Bluebirds take on Bellevue on the road Monday at 6 p.m.

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