Jackson Heights Volleyball Sub-State at Burlingame
After claiming a solid three-set victory over host team Burlingame in the opening round of Saturday’s Class 2A substate volleyball tournament, the Jackson Heights High School varsity volleyball team saw its substate run cut short by Northeast Kansas League foe Jefferson County North, a team that Head Coach Denise Visocsky said has been a thorn in the Cobras’ side all season.
“We have always struggled against them this year. They have just had our number,“ said Visocsky, noting the Cobras’ regular season losses to the Chargers on Sept. 12 and Oct. 10.
Saturday’s season-ending loss to top-seeded JCN leaves the fifth-ranked Cobras with records of 8-6 in the NEK League — finishing third behind Valley Falls and JCN — and 20-18 overall.
In the opening match with fourth-seeded Burlingame, the Cobras had a hard time getting out of the gate, and despite their most valiant efforts, the Bearcats took the first set, 28-26. But the Cobras bounced back to win the second set, 25-23, then finished off the Bearcats in the third set, 25-21.
“We have always struggled in the first game,“ Visocsky said. “So I was glad that we were able to pull out a win.“
Senior Abby Williams, playing in the final games of her high school volleyball career, “struggled early, but was able to come alive in sets two and three,“ Visocsky said, also citing the work of freshman Amaya Marlatt with “some key kills“ in the third set.
But then the Chargers, after a seemingly easy, first-round win over winless Kansas City Christian, came out “on fire“ against the Cobras, Visocsky said, winning 25-8 and 25-17.
“We just couldn’t make the adjustment in the first game,“ she said. “In the second set, we made some adjustments and fought back to play well.“
Again, Visocsky cited the work of Williams, who led the Cobras in kills with 18 for the day, followed by sophomore Kylie Dohl, who was “aggressive all day“ with 12 kills and “a good day defensively and at the net.“
Also cited by Visocsky were junior Karley Dieckmann, who “had some great defensive digs,“ Marlatt with six kills and sophomore MaKenzie Kennedy, who played well through some recent injuries.
After taking down the Cobras, the Chargers were upended in the championship game against second-seeded Heritage Christian Academy of Olathe in straight sets.
Visocsky said that now that Williams’ high school volleyball career is over, the senior plans to play volleyball in college, with “some options on the table“ as to where she will play. Williams, along with fellow seniors Erika White, Shelby Zule, Kate Lierz and Grace Bowhay, “have done a great job this year and laid down the foundation for building a great program,“ the coach added.
Class 2A Substate Volleyball
Burlingame High School
Jefferson County North (1) def. Kansas City Christian (8), 25-4 and 25-2
Jackson Heights (5) def. Burlingame (4), 26-28, 25-23 and 25-21
Heritage Christian (2) def. Bishop Seabury (7), 25-8 and 25-12
Maranatha (3) def. Lyndon (6), 22-25, 25-7 and 25-7
JCN def. Jackson Heights, 25-8 and 25-17
Heritage Christian def. Maranatha, 25-13 and 25-16
Heritage Christian def. JCN, 25-11 and 25-17