Indian Springs edges Bulldogs in volleyball showdown

Indian Springs' Chloe Yeager tires to return a shot in a matcchup with Montevallo on Oct. 15. (Reporter Photo/Drew Granthum)

Indian Springs’ Chloe Yeager tires to return a shot in a matcchup with Montevallo on Oct. 15. (Reporter Photo/Drew Granthum)

By DREW GRANTHUM/Sports Editor

MONTEVALLO — It came down to the last possible point for Indian Springs to knock off the Montevallo Bulldogs in what can only be described as an absolute epic on the court Oct. 14.

In five sets of furious action, ISS took down the Dawgs, 3-2.

The stands at Susie L. Dement Gymnasium were packed, as the Bulldogs celebrated Senior Night, in hopes of sending their eight seniors out with a win with over their former area rival. In the opening set, the two squads traded the lead six times in the first 13 combined points before Indian Springs took a 8-6 lead. The Bulldogs tied it at 9-9, with Indian Springs taking the lead at 13-12. ISS opened up a 18-15 lead down the stretch, and appeared to have the momentum, but the Dawgs went on a 9-0 run to put the set at game point, 24-18. Indian Springs refused to go away, using four unanswered points on the serves of Danielle Wu to close the gap to 24-23. The Dawgs held on, and took the opening set, 25-23.

Montevallo opened the second set with a 6-3 run. The Dawgs extended the lead to 9-6 before Indian Springs countered with a 6-0 run on the service game of Erin Sullivan. ISS eventually opened up a 23-14 lead, closing out the Dawgs to tie the match at 1-1.

The third set proved to be a back-and-forth affair, as once again the teams swapped possession of the lead, this time four times in the opening nine points. Montevallo grabbed the lead at 6-5, eventually opening an 11-10 advantage. A 7-0 run followed on the service of Isabella Howell, giving Montevallo a seven-point lead. The Bulldogs never relinquished the lead, taking a 25-18 set win for a 2-1 advantage.

Once again, Montevallo got out to the early lead, but Indian Springs climbed back into the contest. Tied at 6-6, a 4-0 service run from Chloe Yeager gave Indian Springs the 10-6 lead. The two squads found themselves tied at 17-17, but ISS began to ease away down the stretch, evening the match, 2-2, with a 25-21 set win.

With the crowd roaring to life, the two squads squared off for the final set. Indian Springs scored the first point, but the Dawgs ripped off four unanswered to take a 4-1 lead on the service game of Howell. ISS tied it up at four apiece, and the Dawgs edged ahead, 7-6.

The Bulldogs whipped the home crowd into a fever pitch as Kaylee Smith placed a placed a serve in the corner of the court to tie the game, with Montevallo taking the game-point lead a play later.

With the game hanging in the balance, Indian Springs tied the set at 14-14, and turned the ball over to Yeager. A 2-0 run entailed, and ISS took home the 16-14 set win and 3-2 match win in dramatic fashion.

“(Montevallo) played their hearts out,” ISS head coach Christina Teztlaff said. “It really came down to the hitters finding the spots. This was just a well-fought game by both teams. I love the respect between these two teams.”

Stella Davis led ISS with 21 kills, three blocks and 16 digs, while Yeager had 10 kills, five blocks, seven aces and 11 digs and Margot Balliet had 35 assists, three kills and 15 digs.

For Montevallo, Kaylee Smith had seven kills, seven assists and 14 digs, Hope Wilder had 11 assists and 14 digs, and Howell had 16 aces.