Sometimes it’s just not your day. The Perryville volleyball team found that out quite abruptly. The Lady Pirates fell to Windsor in three sets 19-25, 25-12, 14-25 on Saturday in Ste. Genevieve in the Class 3 state quarterfinal.
Windsor (24-10-4) avenged a loss to Perryville earlier this season and will join St. Michael, St. Francis Borgia and defending Class 3 champion Logan-Rogersville in the final four that begins Friday at the Show-Me Center in Cape Girardeau.
“It was a fantastic season for us,” Perryville coach Cindy Cissell said after the loss. “This team never gave up and although we lost today, you can’t overlook what we accomplished this season.”
Perryville won its first district in six seasons and reached the state quarterfinal for the first time since 2012, when Perryville finished fourth overall. It certainly looked like the Pirates were well on their way to another appearance on Saturday. Perryville had just claimed the second set in a resounding fashion and looked poised to continue that momentum.
However, Windsor claimed the first two points of the set via an ace as Perryville’s serve-receive and passing ability just disappeared.
“Our passing just went away,” Cissell said of that third set, “When you can’t pass, you can’t hit, and then you can’t score. That was where it went wrong for us.”
Windsor jumped out to a 7-2 lead before a pair of points by senior Avery Wibbenmeyer and a block by Kristen Kaempfe put the Pirates back in the game. The Pirates got as close as 9-7 in the set, before Windsor won 13 of the next 14 points to gain a 21-8 advantage as Perryville had trouble gaining any sort of momentum.
“It just wasn’t our time, I guess” Cissell said.
Kristen Kaempfe had a game-high 14 kills, while Jaiden Garris had 8. Ellie Martin filled in for Ashlyn Hotop, who was out with a knee injury she suffered in the district championship game, had four kills.
Windsor was led by senior Abby Bailey who had nine kills, while freshman Lexi Menne had six kills. Defense was on point for the Owls as they had four players with 10 or more dogs, including Ally Moore with 17.
After losing the first set, Perryville came back with a vengeance in the middle frame. The Pirates won the first nine points, and 14 of the first 15 as the Pirates could do no wrong. An ace by Sydney Buerck and block by Kaempfe sparked the run that saw Kaempfe have five kills in the early stretch. Windsor never really threatened in that set after the quick explosion of points by Perryville as they shrunk the lead to 12 points on several occasions.
Perryville (27-7-2) will graduate just two seniors in Avery Wibbenmeyer and Emma King, two leaders, who Cissell said are “irreplaceable.”
Wibbenmeyer had over 700 assists this season as the lone setter and King had 132 digs on the year, with the second highest serve percentage on the team at 96 percent.
“We have a lot to be proud of this season,” Cissell said. “We came into the season with such a young team and we exceeded even my expectations.”
Class 3 Sectionals
Perryville beat Rosati Kain in straight sets 25-16, 25-19 on Saturday in the Class 3 sectional.
The second set was a see-saw battle that saw a total of seven ties, and Rostai Kain have the lead as late as 17-16 in the second set.
With the set tied at 19-19, Perryville won the last six points to reserve a spot in the quarterfinal.
Kristen Kaempfe and Jaiden Garris each had seven kills to lead the Pirates in the victory, while Makara Werner and Makenna Bollinger each had three kills apiece.
Senior Avery Wibbenmeyer had 19 assists, while Sydney Buerck had eight digs and three aces.
Audrey Cage led Rosati-Kain with nine kills, while Damirah King had six kills of her own.
Quinn Cage had 18 assists and Briidget Hurley had eight digs.
The first set was not as competitive as Perryville jumped out to an 8-2 lead after a kill by Elle Martin, forcing a Rosati-Kain timeout.
That lead grew to as much as 10 points after two kills by Kaempfe, with a kill by Garris in between.
Rosati-Kain ended their season with a 13-14-1 record.