Isabella defends home court, wins tournament

Published 5:05 pm Monday, September 13, 2010

Isabella defended its home court and won a tournament on Saturday, but coach Glen Graham said his Mustangs still didn’t play as well as they could have.

“It just wasn’t consistent,” Graham said. “We seemed to relax a little.”

Isabella, ranked No. 9 in Class 1A, defeated Class 3A Loveless Academy Magnet School, 2-1 (23-25, 25-23, 15-12) in the championship match.

“I told their coach, I love playing them and I hate playing them because they remind me so much of us,” Graham said. “They’re scrappy, they’re well coached and they’re going to fight the whole way.”

Graham said a close match against a capable team in a pressure situation will benefit IHS later in the season.

“The one thing with this year’s team, I have not seen them panic at all,” Graham said. “I think this year’s team is definitely more mature than last year’s team. Winning those type of matches gives them confidence they can come back and win.”

Senior hitter Amber Wyatt was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player. She recorded 31 kills, nine blocks and nine aces in three matches.

Isabella also defeated Marbury, 2-0 (25-9, 25-21), and Indian Springs, 2-0 (25-13, 25-23) in the tournament.

Indian Springs defeated Marbury in the third-place match.

Jessica Maciel and Allison Mims from Isabella (18-6) were named to the all-tournament team along with Wyatt.

Maciel assisted on 38 points in the tournament, and Mims had 35 digs.

Savannah Kissel contributed 18 kills, five blocks and four aces for the hosts. Kaylynn Culp had seven aces.