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Monday night volleyball action setup the winless Warren G. Harding Lady Raiders against the (4-4) Liberty Leopards. Early on it looked like it was going to be another quick loss for the Raiders, but they pulled out all the stops to win their first sets of the year. Ultimately, they came up short to the Lady Leopards who have now been nicknamed the Cardiac Cats after going into their fifth five set game.

Set one and the Leopards got into a groove early. They were dancing by the end of the set pulling away to win 25-7. They were led by Hanan Alhmeed and Mia Parker who both put in great effort plays to help pull away from the Raiders early on.

Set two quickly became a very different story as the Raiders matched the Leopards blow for blow and then some. Camille Richardson and Gianna DeMark took over in this second set as they both became very dominant at the net eventually leading to a 25-22 win.

Set three setup the same way but with a new face leading the charge. As the Raiders would fall in behind an epic performance by Savana Shipman. She used unreal power to spike the ball through the heart of the Leopards defense. Brigid Faulk got down a lot for the Raiders here in set three making the big effort plays that eventually would setup Shipman’s big set. The Raiders pulled out with a 25-23 win.

Going into set four it seemed as though the Raiders winless season was going to come to an end. They had won the last two sets and the Leopards fell behind early. But then the superstar that had been relatively quiet all night long finally went off. Lexi Muck collected four consecutive blocks and a handful of kills to bring her team back into the battle. She would continue to play well and the Leopards for the fifth time this season forced a fifth set.

Harding had yet to win a set on the season and now were going into the finale of a two-hour night in Liberty. Fatigue became a big factor as they just ran out of gas against a Leopards team with more late game experience than anyone else in the region. Liberty would be led on one final run by Demi Watson who saved her best for last. The Cardiac Cats of Liberty would pull away one last time to win it 15-7.

A great hard-fought contest between the two leads to the Leopards moving to a (5-4) record as they remain unbeaten in non-conference games on the season. They will play Champion Tuesday night at home on the network. Warren G. Harding falls to (0-5) as they will take on Howland on the road Tuesday night.


*Contributed By YSN’s Alek Koberna

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