Nation Ford’s Taylor Atkinson celebrate with teammates after getting her 1,000th kill for her prep career during the Falcons match against Gaffney Thursday.

With a clean sweep of the Gaffney Indians, the Nation Ford Falcons volleyball team moved ever so closer to a Region 3-5A title.

Nation Ford beat Gaffney 25-22, 25-10, 25-13 to improve to 6-1 in the region and 19-8 overall. Nation Ford has one more region match left against Clover, which could come down to who wins the region title. That match is at Clover Thursday, Oct. 14. Clover still has a match against Gaffney before facing the Falcons. Clover is 4-2 in region play.

Against Gaffney, the Falcons started slow, but were able to pick up speed after surviving a very close first set. Nation Ford jumped out to a 11-6 lead, but had Gaffney battle their way back after taking a time out to tie the set at 21-21. From there Nation Ford was able to get four of the next five points to take the set 25-22.

Nation Ford head coach Craig Brown said he was glad to see his team make the adjustments they needed after a close first set.

“We started off slow, but they turned it up and started playing Nation Ford volleyball,” he said.

In the second set, the Falcons started strong and didn’t look back. They jumped out to a 10-4 lead and then two points later senior Taylor Atkinson got her 1,000th kill of her career to extend the Nation Ford lead. That kill gave Nation Ford a little more pep as they pushed their lead to 20-9 before closing things out at 25-10 scoring five of the last six points in the set.

The third set was all nearly all Nation Ford as they battled with Gaffney early to take a 5-3 lead. Gaffney came back to make it 6-6, before the Falcons scored 12 consecutive points to make it 18-6. Gaffney would call a time out and try to regroup but it was well in the hands of Nation Ford at that point as they got a 25-13 win in the set to claim the match win.


In other volleyball related news, Catawba Ridge swept Fort Mill beating them for the first time ever Thursday night in The Arena. The Copperheads won 3-0 (25-18, 25-13, 25-20) to improve to 21-9 on the year. With the loss, Fort Mill drops to 15-7 overall. Catawba Ridge opens the playoffs Oct. 26, while Fort Mill next plays at Boiling Springs Oct. 12.

Mac Banks:, @fortprep