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Hot September: Lady Panthers roll Salem

October 02, 2013 | 12:38 PM

The month of September has put off positive vibes around the Corydon Central volleyball team.

Swinging from the right side, Corydon Central's Reagan Mosley attacks a ball against Salem Thursday. Photo by Brian Smith (click for larger version)
A win in a consolation match at the New Albany Invitational against Lanesville on Aug. 31 sent the Lady Panthers forward when it comes to tallying wins on the positive side of the record column.

Including the win against Lanesville, Corydon Central has gone 10-2 in the month of September, adding to it a win Thursday against Mid-Southern Conference foe Salem in three games.

Losses haven't come from slouches either. The two hiccups were to Class 2A No. 1 Providence and to Class 3A No. 12 Brownstown Central.

"We're hopefully going toward a 20-win season, which we haven't had for a few years," Corydon Central coach Kim Briscoe said.

The Lady Panthers currently sit at 13-6.

"We're looking for a lot more consistent play, and we're getting that at times," Briscoe said.

The goal for Briscoe of her team is to get rolling come sectional time, in a field that includes No. 13 Silver Creek and Brownstown Central.

Against Salem, Corydon Central had to fight off Lady Lions challenges midway through each game, but the Lady Panthers came away with a 25-22, 25-23, 26-24 victory in Corydon.

"I think they are coming soon," Briscoe said. "We're still working on defensive balance. We know offensively who our go-to people are. I'm trying to get that intensity in our setter's head, even though she's a first-year varsity setter. She's getting better with experience, but I tell her she may not get to set the two senior hitters she is playing with this year ever again."

Junior setter Valerie Crawford fed outside hitter Reagan Mosley to hammer down the game-winning point in the opener. Corydon Central led through much of game one by three and four points at a time but had to withstand a spurt. Behind some miscue of Corydon Central, and kills from Treasure Hurst and Sarah Cheatham, Salem knotted the game at 20.

A three-point Corydon Central run, capped by a Payton Windell kill, gave the Lady Panthers the lead for good.

Game three saw Corydon Central jump out to a wide lead early on. Hayley Rennirt had a winning block, while Mosley and Windell put away several winners.

Up 11-5, Corydon Central saw its opponents chip at the lead. Emily Roberts got on a roll of consecutive winners, while Courtney Moon did the same. Moon's second kill of the game tied the game at 16. From that point, the teams would tie four times, but Salem could never get over the hump.

Six of the final eight winning points came from Windell and Mosley. Rennirt put down a block while the game ended when Salem's Ashton Soliday couldn't get a serve in play.

One area of the floor Corydon Central was able to work on against Salem was defensive play at the net. Two to three blockers were disruptive toward Salem attacks.

"The freshman middle blocker (Rennirt) is so inexperienced but has the skills to be a person of real value," Briscoe said. "The other youngster, (freshman Morgan) Nalley, can really block, but she's so nervous out there. We go as our defense and our big swingers go. If people can't scout that, they don't know anything about volleyball. No one can stop (Mosley and Windell) if they swing."

The third game was similar to the second with Corydon Central racing out to a 14-8 advantage. Once again, the Lady Lions roared back, but this time took a two-point lead on two occasions. The latter came on a side-out, putting Salem ahead 21-19.

Corydon Central took advantage of two Salem errors to tie the game, followed by Windell hammering down an over pass by the Lady Lions.

On match point, Windell served an ace to give the home team its 13th win.

"That third game of volleyball is such a magical thing with teams," Briscoe said. "It's figuring out if they want to win after winning two games. ... We made about 30 errors tonight, which is indicative of why the score is what it is. That was not our best volleyball but, when they go, they are the real deal."

Corydon Central faced rival North Harrison last night (Tuesday), then will play in the Boonville Invitational on Saturday. Another tournament, at Heritage Hills, is in store Oct. 12.

"I'll be excited to see how we do at Heritage Hills and Boonville since that is fall break," Briscoe said. "It's a real wrinkle, but we'll handle it with morning practices and give them a few days off so we can get some healing and recovery done."

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Corydon Democrat, 301 N. Capitol Ave., Corydon, IN 47112 1-812-738-2211 email