GRAVETTE -- Lady Pioneer fans traveled up the Arkansas 59 corridor to Gravette for a conference showdown with the Lady Lions on Thursday. It was an epic struggle between the two rival teams but there could only be one winner.
Prior to the start of the varsity contest, the Lady Lions seniors were introduced to the many Gravette fans that filled the gym. Standing on the Gravette side of the court, Abby Smith, Layne Franks, Nicole Vogt and Jayden Reams, accompanied by their parents or another family member, received a standing ovation in honor of their years of service to the Gravette Lady Lion volleyball program.
After 10 minutes of warm-ups by both the Gravette and Gentry players, it was time for the battle to begin.
The Lady Lions, in the first few minutes of the first set, built a small lead over Gentry; but soon the Lady Pioneers regained their composure and came back to close the point gap.
After several long and exciting volleys between the two teams, the Lady Lions took set number one, 25-16.
The Lady Lions put up up three consecutive points before the Lady Pioneers picked up their first point in the second set. But the Gravette lead lasted only a short time before Gentry fought back and tied the contest at 12 all. On the next point, Gentry fired the ball past the Gravette players to gain the lead. The Lady Lions regained the lead for a short time before the Lady Pioneers came back once again to tie the match at 21 all.
But the momentum switched back in the Lady Lions' favor with four straight points to take the set, 25-21.
The Lady Lions dominated the third and final set claiming the win, 25-15, and the conference match in three straight sets over the Lady Pioneers.
The Lady Pioneers also fell in straight sets to the West Fork Tigers on Oct. 4 and to the Pea Ridge Blackhawks on Oct. 5. Set scores were not yet available to the Eagle Observer at press time.