PHS volleyball splits difficult matchups

Homecoming game Thursday vs. Lovell

Posted 9/27/22

A pair of difficult matchups put the Panther volleyball team to the test last week, losing to 4A No. 3-ranked Cody on Thursday 3-0 and winning a tight contest over Buffalo on Saturday 3-2.


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PHS volleyball splits difficult matchups

Homecoming game Thursday vs. Lovell


A pair of difficult matchups put the Panther volleyball team to the test last week, losing to 4A No. 3-ranked Cody on Thursday 3-0 and winning a tight contest over Buffalo on Saturday 3-2.



Making the short trip to Cody on Thursday the Panthers (11-6-1 overall, 2-0 3A Northwest) knew they would have their hands full against their Park County rival Fillies (15-0 overall, 3-0 4A West).

The Panthers came out firing early, putting the hosts on their heels — taking a 7-4 lead and forcing a Cody timeout.

“It was nice to see us compete with them,” coach Lesli Spencer said. “I think there were times where Cody was nervous and did not have an answer for what we were doing.”

Cody answered out of the timeout, taking a 10-9 lead.

Powell remained in the set, trailing 16-14 midway through.

The Fillies were able to pull away, walking away with a 25-19 first set victory.

Powell came into the second set with a close battle ensuing once again down 7-5.

Cody pulled away in the middle of the set, pushing the lead to 18-11 and forcing a timeout by the Panthers.

A small run by Powell made it 20-16, but the Fillies put the set away by winning 25-16.

“Cody made those little runs that we could not take away and stop the bleeding,” Spencer said.

The third set belonged to Cody, jumping out to an early 9-3 lead and forcing a timeout.

After the timeout the hosts continued to push the lead out, making it 17-7 before another timeout.

The Panthers pulled the set back slightly to 18-13, but were unable to make up the early deficit — falling 25-16.

A majority of the stats were even between the two teams, but the Panthers’ struggles in the serve-receive game were their downfall with 17 errors to the Fillies’ four.

Addy Thorington led the Panthers with 11 kills and 15 digs. Gretel Opps led Powell with 20 assists, Sydney Spomer had six kills and Waycee Harvey finished with five kills.



Returning home on Saturday the Panthers matched up with another difficult non-conference opponent in Buffalo (12-10-1 overall, 2-1 3A Northeast).

Powell did not come out strong in the first set, with the visitors taking the first six points of the match.

“That is something we have talked about all year is coming out ready to go and not getting ourselves in a hole so we have to dig out of it,” Spencer said.

Not panicking, the Panthers battled back to tie the match 8-8 on a kill by Opps — forcing a timeout by Buffalo.

Powell took the lead out of the timeout on a Thorington ace, but the two teams battled back and forth the rest of the set.

The Panthers led late 20-18, but the Bison pushed back and won the first set 25-22.

Serving from Buffalo caused problems all day for the Panthers, but in the second set Powell started faster and held a 12-8 lead.

“They have some tough servers who float serve,” Spencer said. “It just dies in the air and drops. They are hard to read in the air, we just need to be quick on our toes and be ready to go get them.”

The Panthers maintained that lead, and pushed it out to 21-15 before a Buffalo timeout.

Powell finished the set with a 25-18 win to tie the match 1-1.

Another slow start in the third set had Powell trailing 6-1 and calling an early timeout.

Powell started to chip away at the lead, forcing a timeout from Buffalo with the lead trimmed down to one point.

The Panthers tied it out of the timeout on an Opps kill, but the Bison responded with a four point run to make it 18-14.

Powell responded with its own 4-0 run, capped off by a Harvey kill to force another Buffalo timeout.

Buffalo held off the Panther charge, and walked away with a narrow 25-23 victory to take a 2-1 lead.

The Panthers again trailed early in the fourth set, down 11-6 — forcing an early timeout.

Powell came back to tie the set at 12, and later took the lead on an Anna Bartholomew ace to make it 19-18.

A Thorington kill made it 20-18 and forced a timeout.

The Panthers pushed the advantage from there and won the set 25-18 to set up a decisive fifth set.

Powell led early 4-3, and pushed that lead out to 9-4.

Buffalo was unable to find its footing, and two key kills from Saige Kidd helped the Panthers run away with the fifth set 15-9.

“Saige is coming on, I think she found her groove towards the end of the Buffalo match,” Spencer said. “She knows how that feels now and she is becoming more aggressive.”

Thorington led the way with 24 kills, Opps had 34 assists and Bartholomew had six aces.



A week full of festivities at Powell High School will include a homecoming match for the Panther volleyball team on Thursday, with a key 3A Northwest matchup against Lovell (9-9-1 overall, 1-1 3A Northwest).

“Lovell is scrappy,” Spencer said. “They do not like to lose, they do not want to lose. They do not have any major powerhouses but they do not like the ball hitting the ground. We have to beat Lovell, we cannot assume that they will beat themselves.”



KillsAddy Thorington 11, Sydney Spomer 6, Waycee Harvey 5, Saige Kidd 3, Gretel Opps 2, Anna Bartholomew 2, Stevee Walsh 1

Assists Gretel Opps 20, Stevee Walsh 7, Alexa Richardson 1, Waycee Harvey 1

AcesAlexa Richardson 2, Gretel Opps 1, Addy Thorington 1

DigsAddy Thorington 15, Gretel Opps 6, Sydney Spomer 5, Alexa Richardson 3, Mikayla Graham 3, Stevee Walsh 2, Saige Kidd 2, Anna Bartholomew 1, Waycee Harvey 1



Kills Addy Thorington 24, Sydney Spomer 12, Saige Kidd 8, Anna Bartholomew 7, Gretel Opps 5, Waycee Harvey 5, Stevee Walsh 1

AssistsGretel Opps 34, Stevee Walsh 24, Anna Bartholomew 1

AcesAnna Bartholomew 6, Stevee Walsh 2, Addy Thorington 2, Alexa Richardson 1, Gretel Opps 1

DigsAddy Thorington 16, Alexa Richardson 15, Mikayla Graham 11, Gretel Opps 9, Anna Bartholomew 7, Stevee Walsh 6, Sydney Spomer 6, Waycee Harvey 1, Saige Kidd 1