GIBSON CITY -- The Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley volleyball team won a tightly-contested match against Tremont by a score of 25-17, 16-25, 25-22 on Tuesday.
Even through the loss drops Tremont to 7-10, GCMS head coach Taylor Rubarts -- whose team improved to 10-7 with the victory -- knew the Heart of Illinois Conference foe was not to be taken lightly.
“Every team in our conference is going to come in here and put up a good fight," Rubarts said. "There are no easy teams to play in our conference.”
A two-handed tip over the net by Payton Allen -- who finished the match with six kills, 10 digs and 10 service points -- resulted in the match point for the Falcons in the third set.
“Payton Allen saw the floor really well at the end of the game for that match point to put that ball away," Rubarts said.
Tremont led the set 22-20 before a kill by Freehill cut GCMS's deficit to 22-21. After tallying the tying point, GCMS took a 23-22 lead via a Kira Fuoss ace.
“We just had the momentum at the end there," Rubarts said.
Tremont started the set with a 3-0 lead before GCMS scored three points of its own to tie the set. After the two teams traded sideouts to make the score 4-4, Jessica Freehill tallied a couple of kills to give the Falcons a 6-4 lead.
The Turks sided out before a Freehill tip over the net made the score 7-5.
Freehill finished the match with 13 kills, two aces and 18 digs.
“We do rely on Jessica to be that point scorer for us, but I think a lot of people have really stepped up and played a big role in that, too," Rubarts said. "Our front row got some really good touches and some good blocks. Ryleigh Brown came in that third set and got some good touches on their middle (hitter) that allowed us to keep the ball in play. We were missing that a little bit in the first two sets. That was a good change. Our back row did a really great job in serve-receive. It was a total team win.”
An ace by Freehill made the score 13-6 before a couple of kills by Allen made it 14-7 and 16-8, respectively. The Turks would then score 13 of the next 16 points tie the set at 19-19 before Freehill tallied another kill to give the Falcons a 20-19 lead.
“The third set was really kind of a test of what we could do and how we could finish," Rubarts said. "I was proud of the way they pushed from point 22 to take that game.”
After winning the first set, GCMS trailed 9-3 early in the second set before scoring the next five points, including an ace by Mady Schutte -- who finished the match with 24 assists, eight digs, four kills and nine service points -- and kills by Emily Clinton -- who finished with three kills, one block and 10 digs -- and Freehill.
An ace by Freehill made the score 13-10 in favor of Tremont before GCMS tied the set at 14-14. The Turks scored nine of the next 10 points before Clinton recorded an ace to cut GCMS's deficit to 23-16.
Tremont scored the next two points to clinch the set.
“The girls came out and played well in that first set," Rubarts said. "The second set, we had a couple of lulls that allowed them to gain that momentum.”
GCMS def. Tremont 25-17, 16-25, 25-22
At Gibson City
For Tremont (7-10), kills: Talia Meyer 12; aces: Anna Porrit 5; assists: Porritt 25; blocks: Meyer 2; digs: Paige McAllister 20; service points: Porritt 15.
For GCMS (10-7), kills: Jessica Freehill 13, Payton Allen 6, Mady Schutte 4, Emily Clinton 3, Lindsey Heinz, Rylee Tompkins; aces: Freehill 2, Clinton, Kira Fuoss, Schutte; assists: Schutte 24, Freehill; blocks: Heinz; digs: Freehill 18, Allen 10, Clinton 10, Schutte 8, Madison McCreary 6, Heinz 6, Molly Kroon 2, Fuoss; service points: Allen 10, Schutte 9.