VALLEY SPRINGS — School rivalries bring a different atmosphere to the gym, no matter what sport is being played.
3A-North volleyball action at the Tiger Lair between familiar foes in Valley Springs and Bergman was no different.
All five sets were required to determine a winner between two teams who refused to give up. Bergman rallied to take the final two sets to claim the conference win, 10-25, 25-17, 17-25, 25-19, 15-13.
Bergman’s jayvee squad won their contest over Valley Springs, 25-14, 25-21. Valley Springs won the eighth-grade contest, 25-16, 25-22. The seventh-grade match went to Valley Springs, 25-12, 25-16.
After trailing two sets to one and then forcing the final set, Bergman jumped ahead to an 8-2 lead after Olivia Robinson set up teammate Kara Ponder for a kill.
Valley Springs junior Haylie Fry then added back-to-back tips followed by a pair of Bergman hitting errors to get the Lady Tigers within, trailing 8-6.
Bergman added four more points before Valley Springs added another four-point run. The run began with Bethany Richardson scoring on a tip followed by a Kaytlin Middleton score.
With the game tied at 10-10, both teams were showing emotion on each volley.
A netted serve added a point for Bergman followed by Kayden Powers scoring on a kill to give the Lady Panthers a 12-10 edge.
Fry then connected on her second kill of the set to keep Valley Spring within, 12-11.
Both teams alternated hitting errors until Bergman held match point, leading 14-13.
The final volley ended when Powers set the ball above the net and sophomore Karsen Edwards added the game-ending kill to give Bergman a 15-13 win in the final set to take the conference victory.
Valley Springs took control of the first set early behind a pair of kills by Middleton and Kamryn Miller. Fry added an ace and Richardson scored on a block to give the Lady Tigers an early 8-3 advantage.
Edwards added a pair of kills along with a tip by Kaylee Henson to get Bergman closer, down 16-10.
The next point went to Valley Springs and that put junior Chloe Avery at the service line. Eight serves later along with one ace by Avery, the Lady Tigers took the first set with a 25-10 win.
After getting behind, 5-0, in the second set, Bergman rallied behind kills from Edwards, Robinson and Elena Mendez to build a 13-8 lead.
Both teams alternated points until Bergman broke away on a 7-0 run featuring an Edwards kill to give the Lady Panthers a 22-15 edge.
Fry added a Lady Tiger kill followed by Bergman’s Ponder matching on the next volley before the set ended with the Lady Panthers tying the sets at one apiece after a 25-17 second-set win.
Valley Springs was ahead by a 12-1 score in the third set before Bergman could stop hitting the ball out of bounds.
Ponder scored on a tip followed by a Henson ace to get things going for the Lady Panthers.
Valley Springs was still focused. The Lady Tigers went on an 8-2 rally with aces by Richardson and Makenzie Graves along with kills from Fry, Graves and Maura Moore.
Bergman made a short push to get within, 24-17, but Fry added an ace for Valley Springs to put the third set away with the Lady Tigers.
Valley Springs never led in the fourth set.
Bergman took a 7-3 lead after a tip from Ponder and then a 16-9 advantage after back-to-back kills from Edwards.
Edwards added another three kills in the fourth set for Bergman to offset Valley Springs getting points from a Fry ace and a Graves tip.
Bergman held match point and then forced the final set when Ponder spiked the ball onto the opposing hardwood to tie the match at 2 sets apiece.
Bergman improved to 3-4 on the season and visits conference-leading Green Forest on Thursday.
Valley Springs falls to a 1-3 record and travels to Marshall on Thursday to battle with the Lady Bobcats.