Cougars’ Sabotin achieves milestone



Hannah Sabotin reached a career milestone Saturday to help the Class A top-ranked Trinity Lutheran volleyball team retain the title in the Trinity Lutheran Invitational played in the Bollinger Athletic Complex.

Sabotin topped the 1,000-kill mark for her career to help the Cougars defeat Jennings County 25-7, 25-20, top Triton Central 25-18, 25-15, and outscore New Washington 25-8, 25-13.

Trinity did not play Class A No. 6 Rock Creek Academy.

Sabotin entered the day with 995 kills and reached the 1,000-mark in the first match against Jennings County. She had 24 kills on the day to push her career total to 1,019.

Trinity Coach Faith Wilder-Newland said Sabotin has worked hard not only at the net but also in the back row.

“I wasn’t here her first two years, but these last two years have been great," she said. "She’s such a good leader, a ball-control leader in the back row as well as the front court, and just a sweet kid, a great student.

“She jumps very well, sees the block, sees the court, and has a really quick arm.”

Wilder-Newland said she was pleased with the overall performance of her team.

“I thought, from the very beginning this morning, we played really well," she said. "I was very pleased at our ball-handling, which had been kind of a question mark for us. I thought the hitters were really effective. In setting we brought Bailey Reynolds back after having a concussion. We’re kind of having the setters split time, and I thought both of them did a really good job of running the offense. It just kind of went smoothly, I think.”

Paige Lawrence had 33 assists and Reynolds finished with 31 assists for the day. Sabotin was 27-42-24 in attacks and had five blocks during the three matches, Sydney Jaynes was 30-35-18 with two blocks, and Kennedy Hoffman was 28-33-19 in attacks.

Gross had 33 digs, Ruthie Bingham had 19, and Sabotin and Elly Carter each had 18.

Wilder-Newland said the defense played well.

“We’ve got to keep working on staying low, but we’re getting in the right position more often, and making a great effort to run balls down and so it’s really pleasing,” she said. 

The coach was also pleased with the way her team served.

“We served very aggressively, and that’s what helps us out a lot," she said. "We try to take our opponent out of what they want to do, and make them do something that they’re not used to doing. Our servers served the zones very well, and were every aggressive.”

Ruthie Bingham was 25-26-3, Carter was 24-26-3, Hoffman was 21-23-3, and Gross was 19-23 and had eight aces.

Wilder-Newland said serving aggressive “is a definite advantage. It’s actually the first line of offense. If you attack-serve you can score a lot of points that way.”

In the Cougars’ final match against New Washington, Gross served 11 straight points to help Trinity take a 12-1 lead in the first set.

The Cougars jumped on top of the Mustangs early in the second set and Reynolds had a kill for match point.

Trinity (22-5) has won nine straight matches heading to Loogootee Thursday night.

Wilder-Newland said she feels like her team is peaking at the right time. “We’re just trying to get everybody healthy. We just have one match this week. It’s a good time to get a little rest in and stay sharp through practice.”

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