Sigourney splits pair at conference tournament

Sloane Magill scored points at the net and on the service line. In the two wins, she had 24 kills, four aces and missed only twice on 29 service attempts.

The Sigourney volleyball team headed to Victor on Tuesday, October 10 with hopes of getting to play a rematch against HLV. In order to do so, they'd have to get past BGM first.

The Savages played quality volleyball throughout the whole match, not allowing BGM to hang around for very long. Sigourney had double-digit leads for most of the match, winning each set convincingly. The first set saw some fight from BGM, but Sigourney wound up winning 25-16. The second set Sigourney continued to find success on both sides of the ball, taking it 25-15.

The final set saw more high-powered Sigourney offense, en-route to a 25-16 win.

"It was a total team effort," Savage coach Chris Carter. "I felt like our offense played aggressive and took advantage of their weaknesses."

Brooke Waechter used her power and precision throughout the match, ending up with 12 kills in the win. Leah Carter accounted for 32 of the team's 33 assists, while also getting four kills, three digs and two aces.

The second game of the night for the Savages was against HLV, who was host. Eight days earlier, the two teams squared off in Sigourney, with HLV winning that match three sets to one. The Warriors continued to find the Savage weaknesses and score off them.

The match was predominantly going in favor of HLV, with the home crowd there to push them to sweep the Savages. Sigourney continued to battle until the end, though the deficit was too much for most of the night. The first set was the widest margin at 25-13, while the second set ended at 25-14. The momentum gained by HLV took away any chance of a comeback for the Savages, with the third set concluding at 25-15.

"We didn't react well to their hitters and we had a hard time setting up our offense," coach Carter said. "It was a much different tempo and we didn’t adjust."

Sloane Magill and Sydney Striegel provided some small bright spots in the loss. Magill led the team with five kills and five successful serves, while Striegel finished the match with five digs and missed on one of her six serves,

Match-play continued on October 12, with Sigourney facing Colfax-Mingo. The two teams played earlier in the week, as Sigourney ended their regular season at home beating Colfax-Mingo three sets to one. This time the scoring was closer, with Sigourney still earning the win in five sets.

"I think there was definitely a benefit playing them recently," coach Carter said. "We knew who their hitters were and what to expect."

The first two sets didn't go as Sigourney hoped, as they went down two sets early on. The opening set continued a trend for the Savages, starting off slow and falling behind early. Colfax-Mingo took advantage early, which led to a 25-19 win for them. The second set Sigourney got a better start, but still couldn't solve the opposition. Several critically timed plays resulted in a 25-21 win for Colfax-Mingo.

Just when all hope seemed lost, Sigourney began to turn things around. The third set saw some more big plays falling for the Savages, and they continued to string together some points. They were able to fend off the pesky TigerHawks and take the crucial set 27-25, keeping them alive.

The Savages used that momentum to get a sizeable lead in the fourth set. The girls began to play at a high level and it showed on the court, with more confident swings. The fourth set went to Sigourney, 25-16. With the match deadlocked at two, the Savages were hoping to complete the comeback.

That final set went down to the wire, as both sides began to find their playmakers along the way. Sigourney was able to eke out a close set, 19-17, completing the comeback from being down two sets.

"We stepped up our offense and on defense we improved our passing in the third and fourth set," coach Carter said. "Our confidence continued to build after each set."

Waechter and Magill combined for 45 digs, 37 kills and five aces while missing two of 38 serves. The two also paired up for three blocks in the big win.

Sigourney faced Lynnville-Sully next, and got the same result as when they played HLV two days prior, this time losing in four sets.

Lynnville-Sully found their offense early and used it to put down the Savages in the first set, taking a 25-13 win. Sigourney made some adjustments during the brief break, keeping things closer with Lynnville-Sully. The Savages couldn't mount a big enough rally to overcome the Hawks, losing the second set 21-25.

Similarly, to the match prior with elimination on the line, the Savages began to fire away. The offense got things going and the defense held strong when it needed to, pushing the Savages to a 25-23 third set win. The fourth set was another close battle, but Sigourney couldn't muster another huge comeback, falling 23-25.

"We played well, just couldn't score points on our hitting," coach Carter said. "The girls used a lot of energy and emotion in the comeback against Colfax-Mingo. We just ran out."

Leah led the way with her all-round play, finishing with 22 assists, 12 digs, eight kills, two aces and one block. As a team, the Savages finished the match with seven blocks, four coming from Magill. Makenna Hammes also continued her streaky play of late, finishing with five kills and two blocks.

Sigourney hosted Cardinal on October 17, in the first round of Districts. The winner of the match would go on to play Pekin, at Pekin High School on October 23.

"Our mindset is basically the same it has been all season," coach Carter said. "The fact that if we lose then the season is over, definitely makes it more real. If we lose, we want to be playing our best volleyball and get beat be a better team, not beat by ourselves."