By Shari Harris
Saturday was packed with action, with ten high school volleyball teams competing in two gyms. Young athletes from host school Licking and participants Houston, Willow Springs, Eminence, and St. Charles competed in the black pool in the high school gym, while concurrent action in the FEMA gym for the orange pool was between Salem, Cabool, Summersville, Mtn. View, and Steelville. The first place winners from each pool played the second place winners from the other pool in the semifinals, to progress to the final match for first and second place in the tournament, in the high school gym.
Licking went 5-0 to finish first in the black pool, and Mtn. View/Liberty finished first in the orange pool. The final match pitted two talented teams in their seventh game of the day,
Liberty jumped out to a strong lead in the first set. The Lady ‘Cats battled back and tied the game at 24-24, but the Eagles would not go down. The lead changed hands point by point until the end, when the Eagles persevered with a final score of 29-27.
The momentum from such a hard-fought, emotional first game was hard to overcome, and the Wildcats were unable to swing it to their side, losing 25-15 in the second set. The Mtn.View/Liberty Eagles claimed first place, and the Licking Lady Wildcats earned second place.
Licking athletes earning honors for their play included Abby Cole, Kamryn Barnes, and Kylie Taylor. However, all the athletes who participated in the marathon of games should be congratulated for their efforts.