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Jemison volleyball falls to Shelby County

By Alec Etheredge

Special to the Advertiser

COLUMBIANA — With a sweep of the Jemison Panthers in the first round of the Class 5 Area 6 tournament and in front of their home crowd on Monday, Oct. 22, the Shelby County Wildcats were able to advance to the Super Regional round of the Class 5A playoffs.

The Wildcats dominated the first set, before being forced to come back in the second and third sets to pick up a 3-0 sweep (25-15, 26-24, 25-21) to not only advance to the area championship game, but also Super Regionals.

Shelby County made easy work of the first against Jemison going on to win by a final score of 25-15 to take a quick 1-0 lead in the match, but the next two sets were a different story.

The Wildcats fell behind 2-0 early in the second set before a back-and-forth battle ensued between the two teams.

Eventually, Shelby County battled back to tie the set 9-9 and eventually take the lead at 11-10, but Jemison went on to outscore the Wildcats 9-5 over the next 11 points to take a 19-16 lead.

Shelby County, however, battled back with a 5-0 run to eventually take a 21-19 lead late in the set.

Jemison eventually tied it again at 21-21, which led to each team trading points before a 24-24 tie. Needing to win by two, the Wildcats went on to win the next two points to close out the set with two consecutive points to take a 2-0 lead in the match.

That marked the first of two consecutive sets the Wildcats were forced to come back from a deficit.

In the third set, looking to close out the match, Shelby County got off to another slow start and eventually fell behind 14-4.

Finally, a light switch was flipped and the Wildcats were able to reel off 4-0 run to at least trim the deficit to 14-8.

Jemison still controlled the next few minutes of play, however, and eventually took a commanding 18-10 lead. With the Wildcats 15 points away from a victory and the Panthers just seven points away, it looked like the match was headed for a fourth set.

But like the second set, Shelby County was able to get loosened up and put together a strong run. The Wildcats went on to end the set on a 15-3 run to not only storm in front but win the set and the match with a sweep.

With the win, Shelby County earned a spot in the area championship game against Marbury later that afternoon.