Bartlesville sweeps Stillwater on a volleyball court

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Mia Otten (Mike Tupa/Examiner-Company)
Claire Walker prepares to deliver a serve during Bartlesville High School's volleyball sweep in Thursday's season opener at home against Stillwater High.

While the rest of the world was shivering until Friday the 13th, Stillwater High’s varsity volleyball team experienced a different version of triskaidekaphobia: Thursday the 13th.

Bartlesville High’s senior hitter Mia Otten – who wears No. 13 as a harbinger of destruction – unloaded on the visiting Lady Pioneers like a falling piano, a bundle of bricks and a falling meteor. mash potatoes.

Otten hammered 23 kills in Lady Bruins’ home debut on Thursday as Bartlesville won a triumphant sweep, 25-22, 25-10, 25-16.

To Stillwater’s credit, he went neck and neck for most of Game 1 against Bartlesville.

But Otten and sophomore hitter Kelsey Ward (seven kills, four service aces) helped wear down the ill-fated Lady Pioneers. Claire Walker added three more wins.

Other key contributors to Bartlesville’s boisterous brilliance include fearless defensive coverage, accurate passing and the shrewd frame of senior Sydney Collins.

One of the largest crowds in many seasons of Bartlesville student supporters voiced their approval of the night’s proceedings with an outpouring of vigorous cheers and other shows of encouragement.

The Lady Bruins improved to 1-1 while fading the memory of a poor performance last Tuesday at Broken Arrow.

Bartlesville head coach Jen Ward said she was very happy Thursday with “the connectedness. We’ve been really disconnected the last few days. What makes me happiest is when they’re having fun and play hard.”

Next, the Lady Bruins travel to Sapulpa High on Tuesday, then spend the weekend at the Regent Tournament.

Here are highlights from Thursday’s win.

Game 1: BHS win, 25-22

Stillwater flexed his muscles in the opener to keep him as close to the razor as possible. The score would be equal to 1-1, 2-2, 3-3, 4-4, 7-7, 10-10, 11-11, 12-12, 13-13, 14-14, 15-15, 16 -16, 17-17, 18-18, 20-20 and 22-22.

In other words, an intense game of nerves whose survival depended on every serve, every serve-receive, every recovery, every pass, every set and every shot.

Bartlesville took a swing towards the end to win it, with Walker at the service band. The last two points were scored on typing errors from Stillwater.

For the record, Kelsey Ward scored the first home point of the season on a kill, set up by an assist from Otten and a set from Collins.

Otten established herself early on as a windmill of fury whose victims sliced ​​through Stillwater’s defence.

Kara Stotts also scored a crucial point for Bartlesville.

Game 2: BHS win, 25-10

Collins served Bartlesville for a 4-0 lead and the Lady Bruins never looked back. Midway through the game, Marissa Demuth put the Lady Bruins up, 15-4, on a block point – a play that energized the entire team.

Demuth also scored the winning run on an average kill.

Game 3: BHS win, 25-16

This game kind of combined the scripts of the first two games – Stillwater stayed in contention for the first 23 or 24 points combined, but the Lady Bruins finished with a searing 14-1 run to finish the broom.

An early kill from Walker propelled Bartlesville to a 4-3 lead. The Lady Bruins then quickly extended the lead to three points, 7-4, including a smash from Otten.

But, Stillwater slowly recovered to regain the lead.

After Bartlesville’s Bethany Johnson served for a point – to push Bartlesville to a 10-8 lead – Stillwater raced 7-2 to take the lead, 15-11.

Once again, the Lady Bruins looked to Otten to curb Stillwater’s momentum.

She had a huge hit – the ball falling from the hands of a Stillwater player – to power the Lady Bruins’ incredible comeback.

Collins quickly went to the service strip to send 11 consecutive winners to the net.

Katy Lauritsen put Otten for a kill during this run.

The Lady Bruins wrapped up the victory in style, on a fiery serve from Ward that was too hot for Stillwater to handle and went for a walk-off ace.

Other game heroes for Bartlesville include Lauritsen, whose cannonballs helped establish dominance in Game 2; Reid Foust for his ground coverage and his passing; and others.

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