September 20, 2015

BY JOHN D. HOMAN
Logan Media Services

PALATINE- The John  A. Logan  College volleyball team split four matches at the Harper College Invitational this weekend in Palatine.

The Vols posted wins over South Suburban (25-16, 25-17, 25-13) and Harper (25-20, 23-25, 25-19, 25-21), while dropping contests to Madison (25-23, 24-26, 18-25, 23-25) and Waubonsee (25-19, 20-25, 19-25, 27-25, 12-15).

Freshman outside hitter Annie Wehrheim of Woodlawn paced the Vols' offense in the tourney with 37 kills, which averages out to more than nine per match. Wehrheim added 11 blocks, 28 defensive digs, and seven service aces.

Sophomore outside hitter Carly Callahan of Carterville enjoyed a strong tourney, recording 22 kills to go along with 46 digs.

Freshman middle hitter Cheyenne Pitchford of Sesser collected 15 kills and 16 blocks.

Sophomore rightside hitter Chynna Byars also earned 16 blocks.

Sophomore setter Christy Hayden of Benton led the team in assists with 57 while adding six service aces and 22 digs. 

Freshman setter Caroline Rogers was solid, as well, notching 55 assists and 38 digs.

Sophomore middle hitter Kierra Nolan of Murphysboro came away with a team-leading 21 blocks, to go with 22 kills.

Freshman rightside hitter Annie Lietz of Nashville accumulated 16 kills and 16 blocks and freshman libero Ali Amici chipped in a team-leading 54 digs and seven service aces.

"I thought this tournament was a good learning experience for the girls," said Vols head coach Bill Burnside. "We played some really good competition - players that were smart around the net and played good defense. Hopefully, we picked up on some of that and will be even stronger as the season progresses."

Burnside said Wehrheim continued her offensive assault, while battling a balky back. Byars and Nolan were formidable at the net in blocking schemes, but it was the freshman, Pitchford, who may have taken the biggest strides.

"I thought  Cheyenne was much improved with her blocking and found her offensive touch on offense," he said. "Carly also stepped up her game from her outside hitter's position. We had several girls play a really strong tournament."

The Vols are now 10-5 overall and remain 4-0 in the Great Rivers Athletic Conference. They will host Southwestern Illinois at 6:30 on Wednesday.