In the waning moments of the fourth set, C.B. Aycock watched its 21-10 lead get cut down to 22-15.
C.B. head coach Jordyn McGhee called a timeout to rally her team.
Coming out of the timeout, the Golden Falcons won the following three points, with Emily Feddersen’s tip putting the finishing touches on C.B. Aycock’s 16-25, 25-20, 25-18, 25-15 win against South Johnston in Quad County 3A Conference play on Tuesday evening.
“At that point in time, it was like the girls were starting to down on themselves, and it was either they turn it back on, and you get back up, or you lose the set,” McGhee said. “That was one of the moments where they needed to make a decision, and they turned it on to come back and win.”
The beginning of the match belonged to the Trojans, who took an early 5-1 lead.
An ace from Baily Wood cut the Trojan’s lead down to a 5-4 edge, but South Johnston went on a 16-6 run to extend its lead to 21-11.
C.B. Aycock could get no closer than within seven after that point as the Trojans took the first set 25-15.
“The girls take a hot minute to get warmed up. The first set is always rough for us, and it never fails, but by the second, they really turn it on,” McGhee said.
South Johnston was clinging to an 11-9 edge midway through the second set, but the Golden Falcons used a huge 15-5 run to take a 24-16 lead.
The Trojans would fight off set point four times, but Gracie Mooney’s kill ended the Trojans’ hope of a comeback in the second set.
“We changed up the rotation a little bit. I put a new hitter and put some people on back row that weren’t on the back row, and added in some subs,” McGhee said. “I think the changes made things flow a little bit better in the second set.”
The third set witnessed the most back-and-forth action between the two teams — there were several ties and lead changes throughout the set.
But with the score tied at 16, C.B. Aycock used a 6-0 run to move ahead 22-16. The lead never exchanged hands again as a South Johnston error would give the Golden Falcons a 25-18 victory in the third set.
C.B. Aycock and South Johnston continued to battle back and forth early in the fourth set. A kill from South Johnston’s Savannah Smith tied it at 7-7.
But from that point on, the Golden Falcons controlled the fourth set.
Alora Stanton’s kill gave C.B. Aycock a 12-7 advantage and forced South Johnston head coach Matthew Adams to call a timeout.
The timeout did little to stop the Golden Falcon’s momentum. Laci Best’s kill and Bailey Wood’s ace put the Golden Falcons ahead 21-10 and capped off a 9-3 run.
C.B. Aycock’s lead seemed insurmountable, but trouble appeared to be brewing as South Johnston used a quick 5-1 run to trim C.B. Aycock’s lead down to 22-15, at which point McGhee called a timeout, and the Golden Falcons won the next three points to win the match.
“I don’t know if the girls like it if more people are here by the fourth set, and it’s the energy in the room or what, but we’re definitely a four-set kind of team,” McGhee said.
It was the sixth match to go at least four sets for C.B. Aycock (8-1 overall, 2-1 QCC), and the Golden Falcons face off against Fike (5-2, 1-2) in another Quad County 3A Conference showdown on Thursday.