Lady Lions Start
By Sonya Boisvert
TIMES RECORD • SBOISVERT@SWTIMES.COM
Sometimes the pregame warmup can be a good indication of what is about
to unfold.The Westark College volleyball looked like the stronger team
before its match Monday, and little changed once the best-of-five tilt
started against Labette (Kan.) Community College.
Westark (1-0) rolled
to the 30-13, 30-13, 30-14 victory in its season opener at Westark
This is the inaugural season for rally scoring (games to
30) during the first four games. The fifth and deciding game will return
to the traditional standard for scoring.
Westark could have scored as
little or as many points as it needed against the much smaller Labette
team, as everything the Lady Lions tried worked. Sophomore Megan Kahl, the
tallest player on the court, had little trouble in trying to perfect her
early season blocking form, recording nine in limited action.
is definitely going to be one of our strengths this year,” Westark coach
Jane Sargent said. “We have two really strong middles in Kahl and (Emily)
Local favorite Emily Whiteley had four kills and drilled in
several solid serves in her first collegiate match. Whiteley made the
short move over from Southside High School, where she helped lead the
volleyball program to two straight state titles.
As for kills, eight
different players found the scoring column for Westark. Sophomore transfer
Paula Castro showed flashes of why she was an integral part of the
Northeastern Oklahoma A & M team from a year ago with four kills,
including three during a short stretch in the second game. The game was
tied at eight apiece, before Westark scored 10 of the next 12 points to
With Labette posing no threat to taking a game, Sargent
looked at different lineup combinations. One player taking advantage of
playing time was Julia Graham. The a 6-foot-1 freshman had six kills and
two blocks in the final two games.
Graham also reeled off five straight
service points in the third game to help the Lady Lions grab a 11-5 edge.
Freshman Audra Sonnier, a former Southside player then served out the
final seven points to seal the victory.
With rally scoring, serving
errors are magnified and after serving up seven miscues in the first game,
Sargent was happy to see the team cut down on the miscues the rest of the
Westark will try to make it two straight over Kansas teams when
they host Neosho County Community College on Wednesday. The match starts
at 6 p.m.