After coming out of a slate of tournament and non-league games, the Lakeview High School (LHS) volleyball team began its league play on Thursday, Sept. 16 with a win against Lost River 3-1.
At the beginning of the season the Honkers had some tough games and tough losses at a couple of tournaments but were able to walk away with a win here and there. Tournaments are not always indicative of how the season will go, as teams often face opponents they do not normally face, and teams have a lot of games in a short amount of time which can lead to fatigue.
On Sept. 16 the Honkers opened league play against Lost River, which is not always the easiest team to defeat. What made the game especially confusing is that both teams wore white jerseys; normally the home team wears white jerseys and the visiting team wears a darker color.
That did not stop the Honkers from coming out of the gate and playing well against Lost River. Outside of the second set, which Lost River won 25-23, LHS dominated the game and came away with the win.
LHS Volleyball Head Coach Anneke Griffith said the game was a good example of the efforts of practice and where there are areas to improve.
“We have had several heavy weeks of competition and I don’t think we were able to put our best effort forward during the game, most likely due to fatigue,” said Griffith.
The first part of each set was not an easy time for the Honkers, as they had to work hard to overcome a Lost River defense that was scrappy and persistent. Later on in the sets the Honkers were able to begin to pull away, with timely aces from the service line and kills from their top hitters.
One of the important aspects of any volleyball game is the placement of the ball. Teams that can dictate where they want the ball to go will often be at a major advantage, as it gives them control over the other team’s response. Griffith said the Honkers need to continue to work at placing the ball where they are at an advantage and making it difficult for the other team.
While rallies might be exciting for the audience, they can take a lot of energy out of the team. Griffith said that the Honkers need to speed up their movement on the offense and be able to put a stop to rallies. This will help the team manage their energy and fatigue, and allow it to win games without expending a lot of energy. Scrappy opponents such as Lost River can force opposing teams to use up a lot of energy.
Stats for the game were provided courtesy of Dan Jackson. Ashley Strubel: one ace, five kills, 22 assists, eight digs; Tayla Ewell: one assist and 24 digs; Tyler McNeley: one ace, four kills, one assist, one dig, one block; Bridget Shullanberger: five aces, five kills, 18 digs; Kenna Stratton: four aces, 19 kills, one assist, 10 digs, one block; Fernanda Inzunza: two kills, two assists, two digs, two blocks; Jaila Jackson: three aces, one kill, eight digs; Johanna Heil: five digs.
The Honkers played Rogue River on Tuesday, Sept. 21. They then travel to Bonanza on Thursday, Sept. 23, before heading to St. Mary’s for a weekend tournament.
The Honkers are 2-5 and 1-0 in the 2A-5 Southern Cascade League and are currently in third place.