MORRIS — Kaylie Adams has been working on her volleyball game.
That showed Tuesday in Morris' 22-25, 25-19, 25-21 Interstate Eight Conference win over Rochelle. Adams, a junior outside hitter, was phenominal throughout the match, recording 19 kills on 26 attempts with no errors for a nearly unheard-of ..730 hitting percentage. To go along with that, Adams added six digs and 16 service points, including five aces.
"Kaylie was the player of the match, no question about it," Morris coach Taylor Lafond said. "She has been asking good questons in practice. She has also been talking to other players in practice, telling them where they should be and where she is going to be. Her leadership has really shown through and it definitely showed tonight."
In the early going, the match belonged to Rochelle's Katie Van Hise. Three straight kills by Van Hise lifted the Lady Hubs to a 5-1 lead, and Rochelle was able to maintain that margin throughout the first set. In fact, the lead reached 20-14 before Sara Thomas got the serve back for Morris (5-10, 2-2) with a kill. After a kill by Adams, Thomas served an ace to pull Morris to within 20-17.
Rochelle then gained a 24-18 advantage before Adams got the serve back with akill, then served three straight points, including an ace, to make it 24-22 before Rochelle scored the final point of the set.
"Sara Thomas and Kaylie both sparked us and gave us momentum at the end of the first set," Lafond said. "And, we kept it going after that."
Again, it was Adams who stepped forward early in the second set, serving five straight points, including an ace, to put Morris ahead, 6-1. The Redskins were able to maintain the lead throughout the set, leading 22-11 at one point, before Rochelle got on a roll and Van Hise delivered two straight kills to bring it to 22-18. A kill by Layna Dunne made it 23-18 in Morris' favor before Van Hise answered with a kill of her own. Kennedy Dransfeldt then got a kill and served the final point to force a third set.
Dransfeldt finished with 12 kills, seven digs and three points, while Dunne had five kills, four digs, a block and an assist. Hannah Barth had a team-high 20 assists to go with six digs, while Jada Less had 15 asists, four digs, and four points, including an ace. Karinna Riley chipped in with seven digs.
Rochelle took an early 6-3 lead in the third set, but Morris battled back and took an 11-10 lead on an ace by Thomas. Rochelle scored the next two points to take a 12-11 lead, but Adams delivered three straight kills to put the Redskins ahead 14-12 and they never trailed again.
"We had a big talk Friday at practice about our focus," Lafond said. "We had good practices Friday and Monday, and we were much more focused on the floor tonight. It was nice to get a win at home and a win in the conference."