CHS TUESDAY ROUNDUP: Spikers top southern neighbor Carrollton this time. Netters best Kirksville, but softball falls again

On the whole, Tuesday (Sept. 17, 2019) was good for Chillicothe (Mo.) HS sports. Three of the four sports with competitions emerged triumphant.
While the soccer Hornets were downing Knob Noster at home (see story this page), the tennis Lady Hornets’ most-veteran players were pacing a victory at Kirksville and the volleyball Lady Hornets were continuing their success against neighboring schools, downing host Carrollton in straight games.
The only fly in Tuesday’s ointment came at Cameron, where the softball Lady Hornets slipped to 0-2 in the Midland Empire Conference (MEC) and suffered a fifth loss in their last seven games.

VOLLEYBALL
CARROLLTON, Mo. — The young Lady Hornets volleyball squad (3-1) maintained its early-season mastery of teams from its nearest neighbors, leaving them only a mid-October win over Hamilton away from a “region wheel” sweep.
Having edged north neighbor Trenton to start the season and then east neighbor Brookfield, “hub” Chillicothe went south to add Carrollton's Lady Trojans to their list, winning 25-13, 25-14.
Setters Haylee Coplen and Selby Miller evenly split 16 assists between them, while MaKayla Vance provided a team-high seven “digs” on defense. Lucy Gaston added a pair of service “aces.”
Next on the Chillicothe volleyball slate is a Thursday (Sept. 19) MEC home match against St. Joseph: Bishop LeBlond before hosting the annual Chillicothe Invitational Saturday.

TENNIS
KIRKSVILLE, Mo. —Visiting northeast Missouri one day after being shut down and out at the state’s western border by Kansas City: St. Pius X, the CHS tennis Lady Hornets recalibrated nicely.
Behind their most-experienced players, the netters topped host Kirksville 6-3, winning the top two doubles sets and top four singles positions.
The clincher was delivered, according to CHS coach Bob Long, by senior top player Hunter Keithley after classmates Macy Cavanah and Hannah Zimmerman had overwhelmed their foes in Nos. 2 and 3 singles, respectively, by shutouts.
In a tight duel to the finish, Keithley out-lasted Christine Kuttenkuler 9-7 to give the visitors an insurmountable lead.
The final margin was set at 6-3 by junior Delaney May taking No. 4 singles in another taut battle, 8-6.
Prior to claiming a majority of the singles sets, those same four Lady Hornets had done the same thing in doubles.
Zimmerman and 2-times state doubles qualifier Keithley turned aside Gracie Reimenschneider and Kuttenkuler 8-2, while Cavanah and May were dispatching KHS’ No. 2 tandem 8-4.
While Chillicothe twice won close sets, it also lost two tight ones.
In No. 3 doubles, Lady Hornets Megan Sisson and Leah Lourenco battled to an 8-8 tie, sending the last doubles set to conclude to a 12-points tiebreaker that turned out to last twice that long. Finally, after more than two dozen “overtime” points, Kirksville’s entry won the 28th point to give it the match 9-8 (13).
The first-year CHS varsity players then dropped their singles sets – Sisson, in another lengthy battle, by a narrow 7-9 margin at No. 5 and Lourenco 4-8 at No. 6.
The tennis Lady Hornets are to visit St. Joseph: Benton Thursday (Sept. 19) at 4 p.m. at the Hyde Park courts in south St. Joseph. That will be a conference match.

SOFTBALL
CAMERON, Mo. — CHS’ softball struggles continued, despite a comeback attempt which ultimately proved futile.
Still trying to regain their equilibrium after the indefinite loss of the pitching services of the player expected to be their primary hurler this season, the Lady Hornets fell behind host Cameron 7-2 after four innings and, despite Kinlei Boley’s 3-runs home run in the top of the fifth inning, lost the MEC contest 7-5.
Chillicothe (3-5, 0-2 MEC) took a 2-1 lead in the second on a leadoff error, Brooke Horton’s double, and run-scoring singles by Kennedy Corzette and Boley. However, the Lady Dragons reclaimed the upper hand with a pair of tallies in the third, then jumped out to a big advantage with four more in the fourth.
With two outs in the top of the fifth, after 1-out singles by Kiley Kirkpatrick and Horton, frosh Boley – serving as the “extra hitter” as she waits for the health issue preventing her from pitching to resolve itself – blasted a drive over the center field fence, getting Chillicothe right back in the game.
However, even though starting and losing pitcher Halie Rucker toughened to blank Cameron in the fifth and sixth, the Lady Hornets could not make up any more ground.
Chillicothe out-hit Cameron 10-7 and made one less error than the host’s three, but couldn’t make that add up to victory.
After seven road games in a row, the CHS diamond girls are slated to host Savannah in league action Thursday (Sept. 19) at 4:30 p.m. at Daryl Danner Memorial Park.