Shelbyville (21-15) made it a 20-win season at the Mt. Pulaski tourney last Saturday, then notched #21 in the Pana 2A Regional semifinal on Tuesday. Shelbyville doubled up Teutopolis, outscoring them 50 to 28 in a too-quick, 2-game set, 25-15, 25-13.
Shelby shucked the Shoes badda-bing, badda-boom. The Rams sizzled 22 kills and walled off the net with five blocks (27 net points). They dished 20 asssists towards the 22 kills and used 25 digs to fend off the Shoe offensive effort.
"This was a pretty solid match for us," said Ram coach Lisa Peifer. "We were able to keep the pressure on T'town and actually got better as the match went on. Our passing on service was good enough to have at least two options for our setters, which helped us at the net. Our setters did a good job moving the ball and getting everyone involved."
Courtney Williams led the offensive transition game dishing 11 assists, while Eigsti dished seven and Watson two. They set up four different Ram hitters for four kills or more.
Three Rams set up shop at the service line, delivering double-digit points. Brandy Smith had 11 points and one of their two aces. Kelcie Darnell served 10 points with the other ace. Lindsey Eigsti served 10 points.
Late in the season, JV net combatants have worked their way into the line-up to make a difference.
Ryann Ambrose not only made a difference, she led the way at the net. Ambrose swung for a team-high seven kills and added a block for eight net points.
Maddie Holland stepped in and scored a team-high two blocks. Haley Eisenbarth back from injury added another block, as did underclassman starter, Claudia Watson.
Right side hitter, Watson, also added four kills. Starting hitters Madison Boone and Brandy Smith had six and four kills, respectively. Boone and Smith also led the court defense with seven and five digs, respectively. Libero Jensen Cloe also had five digs.
The win sets up a chance to upset NTC and area top dawgs, the St. Anthony Bulldogs (30-5), in Thursday's Pana Regional championship at 6 p.m.
"We'll have to step up on Thursday against St. Anthony, but it is definitely a winnable match for us," Coach Peifer said.
Shelbyville met St. Anthony on September 21 in the Newton/St. Anthony Invitational and lost. 25-19, 25-19.
Pana Regional Semi
Shelbyville def. Teutopolis, 25-15, 25-13
Ram stats: Lindsey Eigsti 10 points, 7 assists, 3 digs; Claudia Watson 4 kills, 2 assists, 1 dig, 1 block; Rachel Fox 7 points, 1 dig; Madison Boone 5 points, 6 kills, 5 digs; Courtney Williams 7 points, 11 assists, 1 dig; Kelcie Darnell 10 points, 1 ace; Jensen Cloe 1 kill, 5 digs; Brandy Smith 11 points, 1 ace, 4 kills, 7 digs; Ryann Ambrose 7 kills, 1 block; Haley Eisenbarth 1 assist, 2 digs, 1 block; Maddie Holland 2 blocks