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Hergert Helps Brookville to Big Win Over Redbank Valley in Five Sets
BROOKVILLE, Pa. (D9Sports) – Lauren Hergert recorded three of her team-best 17 kills in the fifth-and-deciding set, as Brookville made a statement with a 3-2 (23-25, 25-20, 25-22, 23-25, 15-6) win over defending District 9 Class 2A champion Redbank Valley in a rematch of last year’s title game Thursday evening at Brookville.
(Photo: Lauren Hergert was the Hager Paving Player of the Match)
Relisten to the match:
In a match that was befit of two evenly-matched teams, Brookville came out on top by taking quick command of the fifth set building a 10-3 lead on the strength of the three kills and a block by Hergert, who was named the Hager Paving Player of the Match.
“It’s good considering we lost to them last year in the playoffs,” Hergert said. “It was a big win.”
Hergert’s coach, Joyce Reitz, agreed with her senior middle hitter.
“It’s huge,” Reitz said. “To win against the team that we lost to in the district finals, its a big win. It helps our confidence. We lost a five-setter (to A-C Valley) on Monday. So, it’s a big win for us.”
Despite the match going all five sets, Brookville was seemingly in control the entire night playing most of the night from in front.
In fact, Redbank Valley’s two set wins – Set One and Set Four – were come-from-behind victories that saw the Lady Bulldogs overcome a 23-19 deficit in the first set and a 20-15 deficit in the fourth set.
“It’s better to be a head so you know like you have it and you can keep it,” Hergert said. “You get a lead, and it keeps you going more.”
Watch Hergert’s full postgame thoughts.
To Brookville’s credit, the Lady Raiders didn’t allow either set that they blew the lead in to affect their overall performance jumping out to an 8-1 lead in the second set after losing the lead in the first set and then coming out strong again in the fifth set after blowing the lead in the fourth set.
“I said to the kids (after the first set) that one is gone, forget about it,” Reitz said. “We got the serve (to start the second set) so let’s take it and run. Usually, the serve is the strongest part of our game.
“(Going into the fifth set), we got the side we wanted to play on. I told them, play hard. They get one serve, we will take it from there and then we are serving it from there. I said, we have to start strong. That is the difference between Monday and today. Monday, we gave up that big lead. Today we got it down.”
Reitz believed the play of her two middle hitters – Hergert and Maggie Mackins, who added three kills but was also a force against Redbank Valley’s hitting – were the key to the win.
“Our middles determine our game,” Reitz said. “When our middles are blocking and hitting well, that is what runs our game.”
Brookville also got a strong offensive game from Morgan Johnson, who had seven kills, while Morgan Johnson, her twin sister Madison Johnson, Leah Kammerdeiner, Brooke Ganoe and Emaa Venesky all played solid defense.
Redbank Valley was paced by 16 kills from Taylor Kings, while Becca Kunselman added 11 kills and Montana Hetrick nine kills. Kunselam was key in the first-set comeback by the Lady Bulldogs dropping three of her five aces during the set-ending 6-0 run.
Brookville improves to 3-2 with the win and returns to action Tuesday when it hosts Punxsutawney.
Redbank Valley falls to 2-3 with the loss and is back on the court Tuesday as well when it hosts Venango Catholic.
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