Jones leads spikers to rout of Red Raiders

Senior Coral Jones hammered home 14 kills Tuesday, leading the Sparta volleyball team to its second Mississippi Valley Conference victory of the season.
The Lady Spartans spikers hit on better than 90 percent of their serves and turned in a stellar defensive effort en route to a 3-1 victory over the La Crosse Central at Sparta’s Alton Ask Gymnasium.
Sparta outlasted the Red Raiders in the opener, earning a 25-22 victory in the see-saw battle to forge a 1-0 lead.
In the second game of the best-of-five match, Sparta earned a 25-20 win to take a 2-0 lead.
Central rallied in the third game, holding off Sparta 25-20 to cut the deficit to 2-1.
The Lady Spartans righted the ship quickly in the fourth and decisive game, jumping out to a 5-0 lead and rolling to a 25-11 victory to capture the match.
“It was a great match,” said Sparta head coach Dave Waraxa.
“We played defense very well,” he continued. “We dug a lot of balls up tonight.”
Sparta recorded a whopping 105 digs in the match, including 34 from senior Madi Blaha.
Juniors Lexi Gilbertson and Katie Warren finished with 23 and 22 digs, respectively, while senior Jackie Page recorded 16 digs.
Sparta shined from the service line as well.
“Lexi and Katie both had nice strings of service in set four to help us get an east win,” said Waraxa.
Warren served for eight straight points, while Gilbertson finished added five in a row to lead Sparta in the fourth game.
Blaha and Gilbertson finished with seven kills apiece, while sophomore Becca Jenkins added seven kills and four blacks and Page recorded 29 assists.
Sparta improved to 2-2 in MVC action and 4-4 overall with the victory, while Central fell to 0-3 in league play.
The Lady Spartan spikers are back in action tonight (Thursday), when they travel to Holmen for a 7 p.m. MVC match with the Vikings.
On Saturday, Sparta hosts the annual Spartan Invitational, which gets underway at 9 a.m. at Sparta High School.

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