Trojans lose close battle with Cheney



It was the kind of battle you might expect from two of the best teams in their respective classes.

The undefeated Cheney Cardinals came into Brown Gymnasium Sept. 13 ranked second in Class 4A, while Hillsboro, with one loss, was listed among the top 10 in 3A.

Both teams played to the level of their accolades before Cheney escaped with a 25-20, 25-27, 25-23 win.

?It was quite the battle,? Hillsboro coach Sandy Arnold said. ?We had our chance, but there at the end they just made one play more than we did. It was a matter of inches.?

The Trojans, now 13-2 after their win over Haven later that evening, came out a bit timid in the first game, Arnold said.

?At the same time, maybe we realized we could play with them,? she said.

The momentum clearly changed in Game 2, when Tena Loewen switched to her top-spin jump serve, moving HHS from a 14-18 deficit to a 20-18 lead.

?I said, ?You know what, we?re going to go all out for this,?? Arnold said of the switch. ?We got ahead, and it was a battle to the very end. That was a huge change in our confidence. I was very excited about that.?

Game 3 was a battle of heavyweights going toe to toe. Neither team managed much of a lead before the Cardinals prevailed after a few Trojan errors.

?I probably second-guess myself on a couple of things,? Arnold said. ?But aggressive play is what had gotten us in there, and I would rather go out hard then give them something easy to throw back at us.?

Arnold said she hopes her team will take good things from the battle.

?Hopefully, we learned something about ourselves and the level at which we can play,? she said. ?It also shows us it?s the little details that we have to do every single time that might help us get over that hump.

?You can?t let up on any play, or forget to do something?like cover, or have your hands ready, or toss the ball correctly on your serve, or forget to talk. That was a huger things for us. We?ve done a lot with communication since then.?

Although the Cheney match was the showcase event, Hills?boro did maintain its high level of play against Haven, winning its league-opener easily, 25-13, 25-14.

?We still played aggressively, we served well,? Arnold said. ?I thought we moved fairly well, considering you never know what they?re going to return.

?We also had some different players get in, and that was good because we need some different players to get experience.?

Coming?Hillsboro was scheduled to play at Pratt Tuesday, where they were to face the 15-1 Greenbacks in a Central Kansas League showdown. King?man (1-12) will fill out the triangular.

Hillsboro will play Tuesday at Lindsborg for a double dual with Smoky Valley. Sterling and Lyons also will be there.

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