LEIPSIC — There was a great deal on the line in Thursday night’s Putnam County League volleyball matchup between Leipsic and visiting Kalida.
First, a win for Leipsic would guarantee at least a share of the PCL title for the Vikings.
Secondly, Leipsic senior Hayley Heitmeyer was within reach of eclipsing the career 1,000-kill mark.
Thirdly, a victory for the Vikings would place head coach Brent Newell at the top of the list for all-time wins in school history in volleyball.
Check off all three boxes.
Leipsic (17-1 overall, 5-0 PCL) won in three sets Thursday night – 25-15, 25-16, and 25-18 – to clinch at least a share of the PCL title.
This is the seventh time in eight years that Leipsic has notched the PCL crown.
And it didn’t take too long for Heitmeyer to record her 1,000th career kill.
After smashing seven kills in the first set, Heitmeyer hit her 10th one of the night in the second set – which pushed her team out to a 4-1 lead and put her at 1,000 career kills.
Heitmeyer said it was extra special to reach this milestone in front of the home crowd.
“We’ve been talking about it lately,” Heitmeyer said. “It got me excited. But, I learned over the years not to be pressured and stay focused. It all came together and it was exciting. I wanted to get it at home. I’m so happy and so blessed that I got it at home in front of all my fans. I can’t thank my team and coaches enough for everything they’ve done.”
On the night, Heitmeyer had 15 kills on 30-of-35 hitting. She had five blocks, along with serving up three aces.
“It’s a great feeling,” Newell said. “It was a great night for her and for our team. And she’ll be the first one to tell you that she is thankful for her teammates getting her the ball as much as they do. It was an exciting night for that, and also for us clinching a share of the PCL for the seventh time in eight years.”
Lyndie Hazelton had 15 assists for Leipsic. Teammate Brooke Brown had 19 digs.
The Vikings got off to a strong start in the first set. Heitmeyer recorded three kills in the opening moments as her team pulled out to a quick 5-0 lead. Leipsic controlled the first set from start to finish.
In the second set, Kalida (7-13, 1-3 PCL) kept it close for a while. However, behind the strong play of Heitmeyer and Carlee Siefker (10 kills for the game), Leipsic put the Wildcats away down the stretch.
However, in the third set Kalida went on a run.
The score was tied four times in the third set before Leipsic finally claimed the lead for good.
For the game, Morgan Mock led Kalida with nine kills. Teammate Camryn Hoffman recorded 29 digs.
“The first two sets, we were hitting the ball well,” Newell said. “They weren’t able to get any blocks on the ball, and they weren’t able to dig the ball very well. The third set, they started digging the ball a little bit, and got a couple blocks on us. … That’s what kept them in the game. I’m glad we were able to work around that little mini run they had (in the third set).”
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