Tippah County News

Pine Grove gets first ever win over Hickory Flat as they continue to improve in a season of firsts

Pine Grove gets first ever win over Hickory Flat as they continue to improve in a season of firsts.

The 2023 edition of the Pine Grove volleyball team continues to make firsts.

Three days after winning their first ever Tippah County volleyball title, the Lady Panthers got a win over top ranked Hickory Flat for the first time in school history.

Pine Grove took the match in five sets in front of a raucous home crowd in their Pink Out game. It shows just how far the Lady Panthers have come this season.

“We scrimmaged against Hickory Flat several times this summer and they won big each time. I knew we would be a better team at the end of the season than that and I feel like are where we wanted to be late in the year,” first year coach Adam Mauney said after his team’s thrilling win.

The Lady Panthers got it done with a mixture of youth and seasoned veterans.

Freshman setter Mylee Switcher had a career night with 32 assists. First year Pine Grove player Addi McMillin helped pace a standout defensive effort with 5 digs, part of 25 team digs including 5 from Anaston Christian, another Freshman, against a hard hitting Hickory Flat opponent.

Whitleigh Miller and Selah Jumper, a pair of Seniors who have been major contributors to Pine Grove their entire careers, came up big in a big game with all around performances.

Miller totaled 12 kills, a game high 9 aces and 5 digs while Jumper put up 16 kills, 6 digs and a trio of aces.

Coach Mauney was pleased with his team being aggressive at the net where they got 36 team kills including 6 from Sophmore Kailey Butler and a pair from Senior Lexi Beard.

“I have told them all year to not be afraid to really swing it and we are starting to see the work we put in on that pay off late in the year,” Mauney said.

That pay off is the Lady Panthers having won 14 of their last 15 contests as they close out the regular season on Thursday before starting the playoffs on Saturday.

Pine Grove closes out the season against Myrtle.

Jon Ross Myers

Jon Ross Myers is the executive editor and publisher of the Mississippi News Network, Mississippi's largest digital only media company. He can be reached at editor@tippahnews.com

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