Panther

A little over two weeks after competing in their last match, Belgrade’s volleyball team finally returned to the court Tuesday night in Billings.

The Panthers had one match canceled and two others postponed following an outbreak of Covid-19 at the school. That led to all activities temporarily shutting down due to contact tracing.

The lack of practice time was evident as Billings Skyview posted a 27-25, 25-16, 25-11 Eastern AA victory.

“We definitely had some cobwebs to dust off tonight. At home practices are not the same as being in the gym with your team,” Belgrade coach Brit Murphy said. “Our hands are crazy dry from using hand sanitizer 1,000 times today. (But) our spirits are high and we are pumped to be back on the court.”

Belgrade (1-7) maintained a two-point lead for much of the first set before losing, and then Skyview capitalized on the hitting of Haydn Baumberger and Jenna Salveson en route to winning sets two and three. The duo finished the match having combined for 15 kills.

Belgrade was led by seniors Gracey Carter and Kamie Gorrell, who had seven and six kills, respectively.

Prior to the outbreak, Gorrell had already been in quarantine for two weeks due to Covid, thus it was her first time playing in a month.

“Kamie Gorrell was back tonight for her first match since quarantine and did really well in the front row considering she hasn’t played for a few weeks,” said Murphy. “Brytan Rogers was placing the ball really well offensively. Liv Wegner made some great saves in the back row.”

Tycelee Bowler led the Panthers’ defense with 15 digs, while Delanee Hicks dished out 19 assists and added an ace.

Belgrade’s non-conference match against Park County slated to be have been played Oct. 1 will not be rescheduled. Conference matches against Great Falls CMR and Great Falls have been rescheduled for Oct. 21 and Oct. 30, respectively.

Once the regular season concludes on the 30th, Class AA has opted to hold a single elimination postseason beginning Nov. 3.

The Panthers are back in action Thursday hosting Billings West.

Billings Skyview def. Belgrade 27-25, 25-16, 25-11.

BELGRADE (1-7) - Kills: 26 (Gracey Carter 7, Kami Gorrell 6). Digs: 45 (Tycelee Bowler 15). Blocks: 1 (Gorrell). Aces: 2 (Delanee Hicks 1, Bowler 1). Assists: 24 (Hicks 19).

BILLINGS SKYVIEW (5-3) - Kills: 34 (Haydn Baumberger 8, Jenna Salveson 7). Digs: 30 (Renzie Pond 10, Bella Bryan 8). Blocks: 7.5 (Brooke Berry 5). Aces: 7 (Talle Ketchem 4). Assists: 28 (Bryan 17).