Alexa Anderson

Alexa Anderson, shown in a conference tournament game, was one of five Smoky Mountain seniors whose volleyball careers came to an end last week in the second round of the state playoffs. She had nine assists in the loss to Foard.


By Carey Phillips


Foard, the 10th seed, eliminated 26th-seeded Smoky Mountain 25-9, 25-19, 25-12 in the second round of the state 3-A volleyball playoffs Oct. 26 at Foard’s Copas Gymnasium.

“We started out the first set giving away too many points,” Coach Melissa Hill said. “We had a lot of hits in the net and serve receive errors. After that they got it together and absolutely played some of the best volleyball that everyone on the court has played this entire year. We did some amazing things. Our seniors showed leadership, and our underclassmen stepped up and showed their potential.”

The Lady Tigers jumped to a 10-1 lead in the first set and never looked back. Eight straight points made it 20-6, and they cruised to the win.

The second set was much more competitive. It was tied 10-10, and the Lady Mustangs (11-10) were very much in contention down 18-16. Foard took control with four straight points to lead 22-16.

SM’s first lead came when Kennedy Stewman served the first two points of the third set. A pair of 4-0 runs gave the Lady Tigers leads of 8-5 and 15-9. They finished the match on a 10-1 spurt.

Greenlee Flynn led in kills with seven. Olivia Rice finished with nine digs, and Alexa Anderson led in assists with nine.

Rice was tops in service points with four. Not missing a serve were Stewman (10), Flynn and Mariella Sheppard (seven apiece), Anderson (six) and Macy Wike (four).team serving was 97.6 percent.