ROCK ISLAND, Ill. -- The Quincy High School volleyball team opened Western Big Six Conference play Tuesday night with a 25-23, 25-18 victory over Alleman at Don Morris Gym.
"Especially in the second set, our players rallied around each other and displayed strong teamwork, passing the ball well and digging out some really tough shots from Alleman to keep points alive," Quincy coach Tim Hill said. "One of our primary goals this season is to focus on our serving, and Emma Sparrow and Lauren Kroeger served extremely well when we needed it."
A tight start rolled into a 14-8 lead for Alleman in the first set as aces by Sydney Bowling and Gianna Jewhurst and strong play at the net by Bowling gave the Pioneers the edge.
Quincy rallied to tie the set at 21 behind the play of Lexi Wolf and Ella Marks at the net. An ace by Anna Schafer put Quincy ahead, and the Blue Devils closed out the 25-23 victory.
"Quincy is a good, solid team with strong hitters and excellent blockers at the net, but I thought our players did a great job of staying in the match, especially the first set," second-year Alleman coach Andrea Larsen said. "We are starting to get a feel for the areas where we are strong, and the areas where we need to focus our attention, and our passing, setting and digging were impressive and kept us in several points."
Tied at 13 in the second set, Quincy went on a seven-point run. Alleman was unable to regain momentum, and an ace by Kroeger closed out the set 25-18.
"We have a couple of competitions going on for playing time, and it has elevated the intensity on the court for us early in the season," Hill said. "We are working hard to change the atmosphere in the gym for our team, get our players to have more fun in practice and in matches, stay positive and focused on team work."
Sparrow had five kills, three digs, two blocks and two aces to lead the Blue Devils. Kroeger added five aces.