Red hot run for Lady Devils in TCC sweep

Janie Ragsdale (26) outleaps a THomas County Central opponent at the net for a third set return.

TIFTON - Caleb Dawson never had a streak like he had Tuesday evening.

Down 6-4 to Thomas County Central, the Tift County Lady Devils scored to make it 6-5. Then Aerial Densmore took over serving and Tift did not surrender the volleyball again.

The set, the second of the contest ended 25-6 in their favor. So did the other two, 25-11 and 25-21 in a 3-0 win.

"Never had a streak like that. I haven't had a 20-point run," said Dawson.

The streak was so hot that Dawson barely believed it ("She went the rest of the game?" was his initial reaction after learning the score when Densmore started serving). He called Densmore over after the final set to ask if she realized what happened. She was surprised as well.

Densmore's first serve was an ace that tied the game. Janie Ragsdale scored, then Macy Weldon set up Cali Conner spikes on consecutive points. Two more aces by Densmore followed and Weldon set for Ragsdale. That accounted for only the first third of the streak.

Two aces figured into the last two-thirds. Weldon had another set for Ragsdale. The Lady Jackets kept battling, but fate was firmly against them. Densmore dove near the back line for a dig, somehow getting it to Weldon for another point. Conner's spike made it 24-6 before Tift finished off the set.

The Lady Devils were in command during the first set, though not quite to the extent of the second. Thomas County Central were close until Conner finished off a point that made it a 7-4 Tift lead. The Lady Jackets took back over the serve after it had expanded to 12-5.

A Shelby Braswell block highlighted another run in the first set as did a pair of points by Shakiria Chaney.

Dawson played his entire lineup in the third set, giving extended playing times and chances to serve to Skye McCrae and Divinity Mitchell.

"Everybody played," he said.

TCC played its best set in the third, coming back from a 16-9 deficit to go ahead at 17-16. The teams traded seven points in a row, but a serve by the visitors was short. Tift went up 21-20 and did not let go with three consecutive aces by Conner.

Tift's record improved to 18-2. They'll go to Quitman Thursday, part of a tri-meet with Brooks County and Madison County (Fla.). Tift's next home game is Sept. 22 against Valwood.

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