Timpview’s volleyball team brought a lot of energy to Lone Peak’s gym.
The Knights matched that energy and eventually powered through the end of each set for a 3-0 (25-21, 25-19, 25-21) victory in Highland on Thursday, beginning a long season that they hope will result in a fourth straight state title.
Senior setter Gabby Haws – one of just two returning starters for Lone Peak along with libero Grace Evans – spread the ball around to keep the offense humming.
“Since we’re so young we’ve been working on connections and running a faster offense with our middles and our outsides,” Haws said. “That’s what we’ve been really doing in the gym, along with conditioning and getting prepared for the season. This game has been so hyped up because we had to wait so long. This class has been kind of the underdog in everything, so it was fun to come out and show people we can play and succeed at a high level.”
Timpview needed a win a Set 3 to prolong the match and kept its energy level high, tying with Lone Peak 12 times, the last at 19-all. The Knights scored a 4-1 run, with an ace from Haws and kills from sophomores Emeline Hudson and Kinley Swan and junior Ellie Andrus to take a 24-20 lead. Timpview fought off one match point but Andrus scored the winner for the 25-21 victory and the sweep.
“Timpview is awesome,” Lone Peak coach Reed Carlson said. “They are young but they were passing it well and hitting it well, doing everything well. They went to a tournament in Hawaii earlier this season and got to the Gold round, so that proves they are really good. I’m glad this was our first match because they definitely tested us in a positive way.”
With so many young players stepping into varsity roles – and several transfers, including former Pleasant Grove standout Lauren Jardine, waiting for the UHSAA to approve paperwork for eligibility – Lone Peak fought off first-match jitters against a good Timpview team.
“Our serve receive was not where I thought it was going to be today,” Carlson said. “We’ve been passing it really well but they (Timpview) served well enough to give us a struggle. When we were passing our middles were connecting the way we wanted. Rachel (West) and Kinley did a great job and MaKenzie Templeton really stepped up and did what we needed her to do on the outside.”
Timpview, led by Brielle Rueckert and Talia Lee, kept close in the first set until Lone Peak managed a 21-18 lead. Kills from Templeton and Swan got the Knights to set point and a T’Bird service error finished off the 25-21 win. An ace from Kalia Kohler keyed Lone Peak on a 6-2 run late in Set 2 and kills from Swan and Andrus pushed the Knights to the 25-19 victory, leading up to a close Set 3.
Haws dished out 37 assists and added two aces and two blocks for Lone Peak. Templeton had 11 kills for the Knights as did West, who added three blocks. Evans contributed 12 digs.
Lone Peak (1-0) will take on last year’s 5A champion, Skyridge, in Lehi next Thursday. Timpview’s next match will be at Orem next Tuesday.