Uniontown gave Laurel Highlands a battle before the Fillies came out on top, 3-1, on Tuesday in Section 3-AAA volleyball action at AJ Everhart Memorial Gymnasium.
Both teams, their coaches and fans in attendance wore pink for Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
The Lady Red Raiders, who are under the direction of first-year head coach Jessy Madison, a Uniontown graduate, have not reached the level that their cross-town rivals are at, but took a big step in earning a victory in the third set.
"It was a very proud moment for us in winning that third set," Madison said. "We just need to focus on closing things out. We had some leads but weren't able to finish it off. We played Chaleroi yesterday, and we were working on finishing the play. I always tell them, 'We need a bump, a set and a spike, and finish the play, to get the point.'"
The Fillies, who improved to 10-1 in section play and 12-2 overall, look to finish strong and avenge an earlier setback to Thomas Jefferson for a chance to repeat as section champions.
"We have our Senior Night against TJ, so that will be a good match to see," Laurel Highlands coach Emily Konter said.
The Lady Red Raiders (5-6, 8-7) jumped out to a 6-1 lead in the first set before Laurel Highlands came back to tie the set at 11. The Fillies outscored Uniontown, 14-3, the rest of the game for a 25-14 win and a 1-0 lead.
Laurel Highlands only trailed once in the second set at 2-1 before cruising to a 25-12 triumph and a 2-0 advantage heading into the third set.
"I think once they get behind and miss it, then things start to snowball from there," Madison said. "They did very much better tonight with that. That is something they have been working on and I am proud of them."
The Lady Red Raiders jumped out to a 8-1 lead in the third set, but the Fillies charged back and took a 20-19 edge before Uniontown pulled out a 25-21 win to cut the deficit to 2-1.
"I was proud of them for being able to finish that set off after Laurel Highlands came back to take a one-point lead," Madison said. "That was big for our team."
The Lady Red Raiders jumped out to an early 4-1 advantage in the fourth set, but Konter's team rallied back and won the game, 25-17, to clinch the match.
"When you look at it by itself, it's great that our girls have the ability and the fight in them," Konter said. "But we prefer to not put ourselves in that position, obviously. No team really want to be in that position. It's great to come back, but it's also great to put that effort in the beginning and just come out strong.
"It is great to see to see other programs doing well. I love volleyball, we all love volleyball and we all want to see volleyball grow in the area. That is better for the sport and better competition, and we are happy to see that."
Madison wants to see her team finish the season strong, and hopes a solid offseason can lead to more accomplishments at Uniontown.
"We have to keep pushing to get better," Madison said. "I am proud of the wins we have gotten. We will stress to the girls that they need to do the work in the offseason."
Laurel Highlands' Maddie Wheeler led the match in assists with 34. Teammate Emily Buwawa had 15 kills and the Fillies' Alison Humberston added nine kills.
Mya Murray led the Lady Red Raiders in kills with eight and teammate Tyannah Eddings had 10 assists and seven digs.
Uniontown's Jada McCargo had 17 digs and Nevaeh McCargo added seven digs. Abby Bellina and Summer Hawk had four digs apiece.