Robbinsville – The Murphy Lady Bulldogs’ impressive 2019 volleyball season came to an end on Oct. 31 in the third round of the N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 1A Volleyball Playoffs.
The Lady Dogs, who entered the postseason seeded No. 8 overall, once again matched up with the Robbinsville Lady Knights, who had earned the No. 1 seed by defeating Murphy in the Smoky Mountain Conference championship.
After being swept by the Lady Knights in their last meeting, the Lady Dogs came out firing on all cylinders, claiming the first set with a dominant 25-16 win.
But Robbinsville, who was undefeated at home, bounced back and captured the second set 25-14.
The two teams duked it out in the third set, exchanging scoring runs, but the Lady Knights prevailed to take the set 25-19.
Murphy fought back even harder in the fourth set, refusing to go down without a fight, but Robbinsville came out on top 25-22 and advanced to the fourth round.
Murphy coach Nikol Edwards was named co-Big Smoky Coach of the Year, sharing the honors with Robbinsville head coach Kadey Phillips as the two teams finished with an identical 11-1 conference record. Four of the Lady Dogs, Hailey Bowman, Sarah Pullium, Grace Nelson and Torin Rogers, were named to the Big Smoky All-Conference Team, while senior Madison Worley and Allison Wells were named as All-Conference honorable mentions.
Big Smoky Player of the Year: Karlyn Matheson (Robbinsville)
Little Smoky Players of the Year: Kedra McCall (Highlands) and Charlotte Sherrill (Blue Ridge)
Big Smoky Coaches of the Year: Nikol Edwards (Murphy) and Kadey Phillips (Robbinsville)
Little Smoky Coaches of the Year: Carlton Fowler (Blue Ridge) and Katy Postell (Highlands)
Big Smoky All-Conference Team:
Hayesville: Jocelyn Buckner, Jade Patterson.
Murphy: Grace Nelson, Hailey Bowman, Torin Rogers, Sarah Pullium.
Robbinsville: Karlyn Matheson, Gabby Hooper, Liz Ayers.
Rosman: Ashley Hoxit, Elizabeth Daves.
Swain: Jenna Marr.
Andrews: Abby Hedden, Kena Grindstaff.
Cherokee: Donna Thompson.
Hayesville: Maggie Thurmond.
Murphy: Madison Worley, Allison Wells.
Robbinsville: Yeika Jimenez, Kennedy Cable, Halee Anderson.
Rosman: Josie Chappell, Laikyn Buchanon.
Swain: Ashton Younce, Kaitlin Anthony.
Little Smoky All-Conference Team:
Blue Ridge: Charlotte Sherrill, Chloe Fowler, Gracie Watson.
Highlands: Kedra McCall, Jordan Carrier, Reese Schmitt.
Hiwassee Dam: Chloe Roe.
Blue Ridge: Katie Stewart, Maddie Potts, Holly Foss.
Highlands: Tessa Wisniewski, Jeslyn Head, Anne Marie Moore.
Hiwassee Dam: Kaylee Sells, Natalie Nicholson.
Nantahala: Savannah O’Dell