LITTLE ROCK – The Benton Lady Panthers competed in the Spikefest Tournament in Little Rock on Saturday and finished the day 3-1 between pool play and tournament matches. Benton defeated West Memphis 25-15 and 25-17 before splitting with Fort Smith Northside (20-25, 25-11). Because the Lady Panthers beat Northside by more point-wise, Benton was first in their pool.
In tournament play, Benton swept the Texas High Lady Tigers 25-16 and 25-17, but would end their day falling to Mount Saint Mary on its home court 14-25 and 23-25.
“I think we just gave out,” Benton Coach Brandy Chumley said of MSM. “We weren’t very competitive and they were. They came out ready to play and I think we just stayed on the bus.
After losing a slow first game, the Lady Panthers had a 22-17 lead before letting the game slip away.
“We should have won that second game,” Chumley said. “We made some mistakes, hit the ball in the net, hit it out, we just couldn’t keep the ball in play. And Mount Saint Mary played very, very well. We played too relaxed and you have to be competitive against good teams. They were and we really didn’t step it up.”
Despite the loss against a very good team, the Lady Panthers did show up early in the day.
“Northside is really good and Texas High is really good,” Chumley said. “We beat some really good teams. Overall, I thought we played really well for the day.
“The Texas High match, we served the ball really, really well. We got it to their weaker players and moved the ball really well. Everybody was hitting the ball well, too. But against Mount Saint Mary, we did a complete 180.”
Benton will travel to JA Fair on Tuesday before hosting Sheridan on Thursday.