Already down two games to none against the top team in its conference, the Lake Havasu volleyball team could have easily rolled over and conceded defeat. However, the Knights made a valiant comeback, only to fall in five games (25-20, 25-14, 17-25, 18-25, 15-10) to Deer Valley on Thursday night.
The Skyhawks (27-8, 4-0 West Valley) came into the match ranked first in 4A in the Arizona Interscholastic Association’s power rankings.
“We came right back at them and we started swinging and mixing it up,” said Thompson. “We played really hard defense and hopefully this is a confidence builder, because that’s number one, we can play that game.”
Thursday’s match featured some swarming defense and highly contested hits at the net on both sides.
Deer Valley won the first game which did not see either team lead by more than five points. There were nine ties and four lead changes in Game 1 alone.
However, the second game saw the Skyhawks take the upper hand, closing the game on an 11-4 run.
The third game is where the match took a dramatic turn.
Lake Havasu trailed early, but battled back to take a 5-3 lead.
The two teams traded points and with the game tied at 13, the Knights used a 12-4 spurt to gain control and win the game.
The fourth game mimicked the competitiveness of the first game in that there were seven ties and three lead changes.
With the game tied at 12, Lake Havasu went on a 13-6 run to close out the game and tie the match.
In the fifth and decisive set, Deer Valley jumped out to a 5-1 lead, but the Knights battled back to take an 8-7 lead.
From there, it was all Skyhawks as they closed the match on a 8-3 run to clinch the win.
“We’re athletic, that’s one thing. I haven’t found a team that can out jump us,” said Thompson. “They can get us on height, but they can’t get us on reach.”
Senior Savannah Senica led Lake Havasu with 14 kills. She added 15 digs, seven blocks and three service aces.
Junior Rylinn Smith added 19 digs and 10 kills, while junior Reese Myers chipped in with 39 assists, 13 digs and five aces.
The Knights will return to action next Tuesday when they host Peoria in a West Valley Region matchup.
“That’s a must-win if we want to stay in that conference run,” said Thompson.
Lake Havasu swept Peoria on the road earlier this season.