BETHALTO - For Jersey Community High School Volleyball Head Coach Bob Siemer, this season has been a learning experience for the girls on the varsity team.

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Before their match against Civic Memorial High School on Tuesday, their team has had some difficulty gaining wins. However, with every loss, the girls learned something new from their competitors.

The knowledge gained from their past losses allowed them to nail down a victory against their conference competitors at CM Tuesday night.

“We learned some things from Mascoutah, like how to play a little quicker,” he said.

The first set of the game really showcased Civic Memorial’s serving. Junior Kennedy Carnes (#14) served some heat in the beginning of the first set, assisting in raising the Eagles’ score quickly to 10-6.

CM was a offensive powerhouse during the first set, winning quite fast with a score of 25-15. Their quick play was just too much for the Panthers to handle.

After recouping and flipping sides on the court, the second set was underway; Jersey was determined to win the second set to guarantee the tie-breaking third set. The Panthers earned the first points of the game, but this set was close the entire time. Junior Mackenzie Thurston (#2) assisted her team by producing some killer spikes in the second set.

Jersey sophomore Faith Frankie (#18) showed herself as a true pivotal part of the Panthers team while she stood on guard and blocked some key hits made by the Eagles.

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“She’s really starting to get into it,” Coach Siemer said.

As the severely close set continued, the Eagles and Panthers came to a position where they were tied 19-19. The fight for the third set began at this point. Jersey froze their competitors in their tracks, scoring six points in a row to secure the second set with a score of 25-19. 

The two clearly capable and nearly equally matched teams came back onto the court for the third and final set. The Panthers took the first point, but the Eagles quickly returned with a point of their own due to CM junior Sydney Marshall’s (#8) distinctive and effective serving techniques. 

The third set was extremely close throughout, tying several times. Finally, when the teams were tied at 13-13, the Panthers decided to up the ante and make their push for victory. They rose their score to 19-13 when the Eagles began to fight back. Unfortunately, Civic Memorial was only able to raise their score to 17 when the Panthers bested them with a 25-17 score.

“We practiced serving some hard balls,” Siemer said, “We realized we could do some damage with that.”

Overall, it seems like the Panthers have worked well enough together this year that they can really compete in their upcoming battle against Waterloo High School.

“They can kind of see the light at the end of the tunnel,” he said, “I keep telling them that you have to play as hard as you can with (CM), and you’ll get a chance to win (against Waterloo).”

CM's junior varsity team walked away with a victory against the Jersey Panthers in their 2-1 match. 

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