STANLY VOLLEYBALL: Gray Stone, West Stanly face third-round opponents on the road

Published 3:51 pm Friday, October 29, 2021

In high school volleyball playoff games Thursday night, West Stanly traveled to Southwestern Randolph while Gray Stone was in Asheboro to take on the Uwharrie Charter Eagles.

Southwestern Randolph 3, West Stanly 0

The Colts (24-5) got down early and kept the last two sets close, but fell in straight sets to Southwestern Randolph.

Scores of the match were and 25-10, 25-18 and 25-19 in favor of the No. 2 seeded Cougars (25-5).

The Colts fell behind 8-1 in the first set and were outscored 10-4 over the last points of the opening frame.

West rallied in the second set and led 6-1 before the Cougars rallied to tie with a 6-1 run. Southwestern outscored West 8-3 over the final 11 points of the second set.

The Colts battled back in the third set and got within a point on a Kayli Cleaver kill, 17-16. The Cougars extended the lead and outscored West 8-3 to win the final set and advance to the 2A Elite Eight.

“Southwestern played great tonight. I’m not disappointed at losing to a good team, and I’m not disappointed with our season,” West head coach Steffi Dutton said.

West Stanly earned the Rocky River Conference regular-season and tournament championships this season, posting a third straight season of undefeated conference play. The Colts also set a school record for most wins in a volleyball season.

West loses six seniors from this year’s team: Kayli Cleaver, Mia Barbee, Caylee Clayton, Alyssa Pope, Abbie Huneycutt and Keely Brown.

Uwharrie Charter 3, Gray Stone 0

The No. 11 seeded Knights went on the road and fell in straight sets to the No. 3-seeded Eagles with scores of 25-21, 25-18 and 25-14 in favor of Uwharrie (20-5).

“Uwharrie Charter is a very good team, and we were unable to get any momentum going,” Gray Stone head coach Rebecca Carter said regarding the loss.

Gray Stone (18-5) finished second this season in the 1A/2A Yadkin Valley Conference standings behind the 1A West Region’s top seed, Union Academy.

“I could not be prouder of the teamwork that was shown throughout our season,” Gray Stone head coach Rebecca Carter said.

“Although we did not always come out on top in every game, it was not because of effort…I hate to see our season come to an end, but I am very proud of our team.”

The Knights graduate eight players this season: Raegan Gulledge, Margaret Huckabee, Zoee Hatley, Olivia Eldridge, Mandi Stoyanov, Lannah Huneycutt, Arial Vang and Alivia Arnez.

About Charles Curcio

Charles Curcio was the sports editor of the Stanly News & Press from 1999-2001 and has currently served in the same capacity since 2008. He was awarded the NCHSAA Tim Stevens Media Representative of the Year and named CNHI Sports Editor of the Year in 2014. He has also been honored twice by the North Carolina Press Association.

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