FERDINAND — Henryville coach Christy Nunn's troops were coming off their first sectional title since 2015 and were seeking even loftier heights in Saturday's Class 2A Forest Park Regional.
However the Hornets ran into a buzzsaw.
Top-ranked Barr-Reeve rolled to a 25-12, 25-9, 25-17 sweep of Henryville in the regional semifinals. The Vikings (33-2) advanced to face 10th-ranked Tecumseh in tonight's final.
"For every one point we got on their serve, they got two," Nunn said. "When you look at the actual play, I think we held our own. We would just drop a service point, and they wouldn't ... but I couldn't be more pleased with how we competed."
There was no shame in the effort the Hornets (19-10) displayed, particularly in the third set, when they out-hustled the Vikings to win several points in keeping the deciding frame contested throughout.
"These girls have been a joy to coach, on and off the floor. They have given it their all all season," Nunn said. "[Barr-Reeve] is just so powerful. We struggled with serve-receive, but we fought them as hard as we could throughout. I'm really proud of them."
Junior setter Riley Nunn paced the Henryville attack with six kills and 10 assists and made a few spectacular plays on defense throughout the third set.
Junior outside hitter Anna Ballengee paced the Barr-Reeve attack with 14 kills. Libero Jasye Thompson recorded seven service aces.
"They are excellent servers," Nunn said. "That is a huge weapon."
The Hornets graduate Emily Bush, Riley Diterlan, Callie DeVore and Kaylee Hardesty but return a core that will be built around Nunn, fellow junior Charleigh Ryan, sophomores Claire Tucker and Haley Terry and freshman Kylie Lacy, among others.
"We're young and [the Vikings] are too, although our kids may not have as much experience as theirs do," Christy Nunn said. "We had two freshman and two sophomores out there, and the challenge is to get better. I told them if they want to play club volleyball I'd coach them, and if they want to invest their time, I'm ready to get better with them."