SELLERSBURG — Senior outside hitter Kendall Kerberg had 19 kills, nine aces and six digs to lead Christian Academy to a 25-22, 25-18, 25-4 sweep of host Rock Creek in a matchup of former sectional foes Tuesday night.
“She is the heart of our team,” first-year Christian Academy coach Chrissy Millen said of Kerberg. “She has a high volleyball IQ and is such a competitor.”
Across the net the Lions (8-1), who came in ranked No. 2 in Class A, were unable to counter the solid effort by Christian Academy (7-2), which is playing in Class 3A this season due to the IHSAA's "success factor."
“We could not get anything going,” Rock Creek coach Jennifer Brown said. “Obviously, this wasn’t our night. [We had] terrible communication.”
In the first set, Kerberg had four aces during a 7-0 run by the Warriors to turn a 4-4 tie to an 11-4 CAI lead.
“We needed to keep them out of their system,” Millen said. “We were serving tough and attacking them with our serve. Our goal was to minimize their serve-rotation to one or two points.”
It worked, keeping Rock Creek’s junior outside hitter Ligia Williams off the frontline and leaving the Lions out of sync.
CAI led 17-11 when a pair of kills by Rock Creek senior Bailey Brown cut the deficit to four. Moments later, a pair of aces by Williams pulled the Lions to within 22-19.
Rock Creek would get within one, at 23-22, but couldn’t get the lead late in the set. It was 24-22 when junior middle hitter Jolie Miles had an ace to seal the win for the Warriors.
The second set played out much the same as the first. It was tied at 6 after an ace by Rock Creek's Lajoy Williams before a series of Lion errors helped Christian Academy to a 10-6 lead. The Warriors took control after that.
A pair of aces by junior Adeline Baldwin, combined with a kill by Halle Rankin and a block by Miles keyed a 9-0 run by the Warriors, giving them a 15-6 lead.
Again, Rock Creek fought back. A kill by Ligia Williams tied it at 18, but CAI countered with a Kerberg block to take the lead for good. The Warriors would finish with a 7-0 run capped by a Kerberg kill to win the second set 25-18.
Rock Creek looked to extend the match and hung tough early in the third set. The Lions trailed 9-8 when Christian Academy made another mid-set run.
This one was paced by Rankin, who had a kill, a block and a pair of aces to help the Warriors build an 18-9 lead. Rock Creek showed some life when Ligia Williams had a kill and a block to cut the deficit to seven (18-11), but that was as close as the Lions would get. A kill by Baldwin put the Warriors up 22-14 and Miles iced the match with a block for the win.
Sophomore Abby Vancampen had 14 digs for CAI (7-2) while Rankin (23) and Baldwin (13) led the way in assists for the Warriors.
Rock Creek received nine kills from Ligia Williams and four from junior Leah Thompson. Brown had 15 digs and 13 assists for the Lions.