Girls Volleyball: Reed-Custer defeats Coal City
By Tim O’Brien For Sun-Times Media September 20, 2012 10:42PM
Reed-Custer's Marian Barton (12), Vanessa VanDuyne (2) and Krystal Wanda (6) celebrate their win over Coal City during their volleyball game in Braidwood Thursday, September 20, 2012. | Brett Roseman~Sun-Times Media
Updated: October 22, 2012 6:20AM
Whenever rival Coal City pops up on the schedule, Reed-Custer’s Courtney Welch never has any problem getting up for the match.
But welcoming the Coalers to Braidwood on Thursday, Welch had some extra motivation.
As part of Military Appreciation Night, Welch escorted her father, Duke Welch, an eight-year Marine Corps veteran, onto the court. Players from both teams escorted family members and friends with military backgrounds during a pre-match ceremony.
“It was amazing,” Welch said. “I was so nervous when the JV game was going on. My heart was racing. It didn’t matter, win or lose, because it was a great cause and it was fun to play.”
Once the teams took to the court, Reed-Custer made short work of its rival, dispatching Coal City 25-19, 25-8.
Having worked with Coal City coach Michael Lanoue to put together Military Appreciation Night, Reed-Custer coach Denny Pommier was glad to see the night finally come to fruition.
“You have a vision of how it should go, but you never know,” Pommier said. “There weren’t a lot of dry eyes in the house, and it was a neat thing to see and do for our girls.”
Marian Barton had 10 kills and seven digs to lead Reed-Custer (7-6), with Olivia O’Donnell (7 digs), Paige Marquardt (11 assists, 9 digs) and Welch (3 kills) also contributing in the Interstate Eight crossover.
Donjeta Shabani (4 kills), Kassie Aldridge (7 assists) and Hailey Reilly (3 aces) led Coal City (6-6).
Trailing 18-17 in the first set, Reed-Custer turned to its service game to turn the tide. Krystal Wanda (3 aces) had a kill and two aces, with Barton closing the match on three straight aces as part of an 8-1 spurt.
“I see where the ball is going (at the defense), and I was able to get into a rhythm,” Barton said. “The team was so excited, and we really believed we could do it (in the second set).”
The Lady Comets raced out of the gates in the second set, going up 7-1 thanks to four service points from Wanda. Marquardt had her own service run later, rattling off straight six points.
Reed-Custer closed on a 7-0 run with Barton providing the final two kills. Coal City committed 13 errors in the second set.
“We didn’t pass the way we should pass,” Lanoue said. “Reed-Custer just didn’t make many mistakes, and we never turned it up.”