Lady Trojans work hard to sweep Folsom in three games

By: Brett Ransford/Telegraph Correspondent
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Oak Ridge (4-1, 15-10) concluded the first half of its Delta River League schedule winning a 3-0 match over host Folsom (2-3, 4-13) on Thursday night. A match after losing three-straight sets to St. Francis, the Lady Trojans took Folsom 26-24, 25-21, 25-23 in their fourth league win and comfortably in the race for a playoff berth through the next round of league opponents. Folsom kept their opponent to a six-point lead at best in the second game and pushed seven ties in the first game and 11 more in the third. The first game was close after Oak Ridge took an 8-6 lead since going down 5-1 to begin. The Lady Bulldogs defended against two game-point opportunities, but Haley Simmons went through a block attempt for the final point. Simmons led both teams with 13 kills. Oak Ridge began the second and third games up 3-0. The second went to an 11-11 tie as Oak Ridge struggled to close out the game later on errant passes and kill attempts. In both the second and third games however, a cushion going into the final five points aided Oak Ridge in finishing. Tied at 20-20 in the third game, four Oak Ridge players -- Alexa Becker, Amelia Crye, Helena Strube and Stephanie Guest -- put in kills to edge it. Mysha Davies put in 10 kills and Becker followed with nine kills and 11 digs. Guest did her part elsewhere with 12 digs and Maddie Chambliss had 11. Oak Ridge coach Becky Potter said it wasn’t her team’s best performance. “Even when we’re off it’s nice that we can still pull out a win,” said Potter. “I’m pretty pumped, we only lost one match in the first round [of DRL play]. It’s games like these which can make you lose league, but my girls know that every match is important.” Thursday’s game was important to Folsom’s exciting outside hitter Jaia Lockett also. Lockett turned 17-years-old on Thursday and was sung a happy birthday song prior to the match start. She led her team with eight kills and 19 digs on a solid birthday performance. “I’m just really happy that I didn’t play badly on my birthday,” said Lockett. “I gave it all I can, which is all I can do and I’m glad we only lost by a couple points in each set. That was good enough for me even though we didn’t get the win.” Locket said she was able to celebrate after the match as she went to dinner with friends. Libero Tiana Lee contributed 18 digs and had a “great” match, according to her coach. Folsom coach Cinnamon DaSilva said she asked her team to come out against Oak Ridge and not give up points. “I think they made Oak Ridge work. They played hard and put their hearts into it. We had some good moments and we were within points in every game,” said DaSilva. Folsom’s second run through the DRL begins with winless Sheldon (0-4) on Thursday, who they beat 3-0 for their first league win in early October. Oak Ridge hosts Sheldon on Tuesday in its first of five matches which concludes the end of October with pivotal meetings at home against St. Francis and at Ponderosa. Ponderosa (3-1) is tied with Oak Ridge for second place and played against league-leading St. Francis (4-0) on Thursday night.