Green Forest loses more than game in home loss to Alpena
GREEN FOREST -- Green Forest solidified the No. 2 seed in 3A-North Conference after a 3-1 loss to Alpena Tuesday night at Fred Grim Gym, 25-21, 22-25, 25-21 and 25-11.
The Lady Tigers still garnered a bye in the 3A-North Conference Tournament and will play Saturday at 8:30 p.m. in Valley Springs. Alpena is the top seed. The two could meet again in the finals Monday at 6:30 p.m. Green Forest coach Trista Killingsworth said the Lady Tigers were more competitive against the Lady Leopards than in the first game between the two teams earlier in the season.
"We really played them better than the first time," Killingsworth said. "We got whipped the first time. This time we were hitting in the middle and they defended it pretty well. We had some good moments tonight and fought harder than when we were there."
Payton Watson led the Lady Tigers at the net with seven kills while Emily Glassell added five and Carley Chicas chipped in with three. Chicas and Madison Owens collided on the floor diving for a ball, leaving Owens with a concussion and a fractured bone in her neck. Owens will miss the rest of the season but is expected to make a full recovery.
"She is done for the season," Killingsworth said. "But she will be okay. She will be back next season. I feel so bad for her. She was improving all the time."
Watson also led the team in digs with 29, Keylen Bell and Kelsey Deckard had 22 each, Williams added 18, Harleigh Andrews had 15 and Glassell had 12.
"Harleigh (Andrews) really stood out," Killingsworth said. "She came in and her serve was awesome. She played on the back row played and had an excellent game. She really came to play."
Green Forest can solidify a state playoff berth with a win on Saturday against either ICC or Bergman as the top three teams in the conference advance to state. A loss on Saturday and the Lady Tigers would have to win Monday's qualifier to each the next level.
"We need to win Saturday night," Killingsworth said. "If we lose we still have another chance. But we don't want it to go there. We want to take care of business Saturday."
Killingsworth said the Lady Tigers would need to compete better than they did in Tuesday's loss.
"We need to tune things up," she said. "We need to have harder hits on offense. We can't play scared on offense. Our defense has improved. But we have to be more aggressive at the net."