LaNier, Clements Powers Orange Volleyball Past South Granville 3-1

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Updated: August 15, 2018

During her first week of practice as the new Orange volleyball coach, Kelly Young made no secret of her goals.

“I want to be Chapel Hill,” said Young.

It’s a lofty goal. The Tigers have won consecutive 3A Eastern Regional Championships since the arrival of Ross Fields as head coach in 2016.

Orange isn’t ready to compete for state championships two games into 2018, but Tuesday night certainly was a promising sign.

The Panthers defeated perennial 2A power South Granville 3-1 at Jim King Gymnasium on scores of 25-15, 22-25, 25-17 and 25-16. The Lady Panthers (2-0) were 24 hours removed from a road victory over Eastern Alamance in Mebane.

The Vikings (0-1) have a 102-20 record since 2014. During the past four years, they have won three Northern Carolina Conference Championships, two 2A Eastern Regional Championships and the 2015 2A State Championship.

Despite that, Young says she wasn’t surprised by the result.

“I had a good feeling,” said Young. “I knew that they (South Granville) was strong, so I was excited about playing them. I know we play them again at their place on Thursday, so I know they’ll be out for blood. So we’ve got to play even better than we did tonight.”

The two teams split the opening sets. In the third, South Granville bolted out to a 6-1 lead. Orange went on a 11-6 run, which included a block from Libby Jones and consecutive kills from junior Emma Clements. With the set tied 10-10, Clements spiked a ball off an assist from Kaitlyn Werden to take the lead. Gracie Ducharme’s kill off a pass from Elizabeth Vosburg wrapped up the set and gave Orange a 2-1 lead.

In the fourth set, Orange never trailed. They started on a 4-1 run, which included an ace from Werden. In the final set, Clements had four kills and one ace as Orange pushed its lead to 20-12 at one point. Vosburg, which her older brother Logan watching from the stands, had a key block that pushed the Lady Panthers’ advantage to 19-12.

On Monday night, Orange defeated Eastern Alamance in Mebane for Young’s first win as the Lady Panthers’ coach. Orange took the first two sets 25-8 and 25-17.

Liz LaNier had 21 kills against the Eagles, while Clementrrs added 16 kills and Jones had 10. Werden led Orange with three aces, while Clements added two. LaNier also had eight blocks. Senior Meg Gattis finished with 45 digs. Werden also had eleven assists, while Ducharme had six.

Orange travels to South Granville on Thursday. They return home on Monday night for a rematch against Eastern Alamance.

 

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