Underclassmen star in Webb’s sweep of Northern

Sep. 19, 2013 @ 11:23 PM

Down two of its regulars, Sarah Thomasson and Harper Pruitt, J.F. Webb scored its fourth 3-A Big Eight Conference win of the season Thursday, beating Northern Vance 3-0 (25-19, 25-18, 25-21).

It was the first conference meeting between Webb and Northern. The Warriors also swept the Vikings at the KVA Classic.

“They maintained,” Webb head coach Ellis Crews said of his team. “The main thing was to win, to get them some experience. The future looks bright with these young kids I have.”

Sophomore setter Elizabeth Pegram led the way.

“She played great defense today,” said Crews. “She put the ball in some good spots.”

Crews also credited underclassmen Ashley Owen and Katie Ayscue with strong play along with junior Hayley Marshburn.

Northern, which dropped to 1-6 in conference play, was competitive in each set, especially the third when the Vikings held a 16-15 lead and pulled back within three points before Marshburn ended the match with a powerful spike. 

“I think we waited too late to find the energy,” said Northern head coach Christa Mosly. “I think overall both teams had the fire and desire to really win.”

Youth was the theme for both sides Thursday. It has been all season for Northern with the play of freshmen Megan Andrews, Holly Hilliard and Brianna Waller.

Waller landed an emphatic block in the middle of the third game as Northern built a three-point lead.

Mosly expects Waller to develop into a go-to hitter.

“Megan is an all-around player, doesn’t really matter where we put her and the same with Holly,” said Mosly. “Brianna is more of a developing player. We put her in mostly to block, but once she gets the rest of her fundamentals together, she’s probably going to be my next Emily Hilliard.”

Webb (12-4 overall) visits Southern Durham on Tuesday and Northern hosts Cedar Ridge.

“We’ve got everything in place,” said Crews. “Still we’re working on one of our weaknesses and that’s the mental stuff.”

Contact the writer at kholtzman@hendersondispatch.com.