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Volleyball: Home, sweet home: Lady Cougars find success at friendly confines
By Justin Thomas, email@example.com
As if The Colony's general inexperience wasn't a big enough challenge, particularly early in the year, the schedule makers in District 9-4A dealt the Lady Cougars volleyball team another tough break by sending the squad on the road for its first three matches.
Additionally, two of those matches came against Frisco Centennial and Frisco, currently first and second, respectively, in the district standings.
But after stumbling out to an 0-3 start, The Colony got back on track during the past week by picking up a pair of victories while playing in the friendly confines of their home gym.
"It was a big rebound week for us," said Terri Harrod, The Colony head coach. "We finally got to play at home and we got a couple of wins we really needed. Like has been the case, we still had a few moments where we kind of had that blank, glazed look on our faces. We need to stop that from happening. But this time we were able to snap out of it quickly and get right back in the match."
Harrod was also pleased with the Lady Cougars' ability to not only rally out of a 2-1 deficit against Heritage, but with their ability to rally from behind within individual sets.
"We did it multiple times against Heritage," she said. "And Friday against Little Elm, we were actually down, 6-1, in the first set and came back to go up, 10-6, and we were down, 19-16, in the last set and came back to go up, 22-20, at one point."
Against Heritage, Mady Gill paced the Lady Cougars with 22 kills and five aces, while Tori Hawk posted a team-high 32 digs and Lauren Ranney led the way with 32 assists to go with four aces and nine kills. Kennedy Keiser chipped in 22 assists as well, while Jennifer Valenciano had 16 kills and Monica Bagien had eight terminations.
Against Little Elm, Valenciano had 15 kills, with Gill contributing 12, Natalie Collier eight and Bagien six.
"We're starting to get more balance on the attack," Harrod said. "And I think getting these wins was more of a relief than anything. We feel we can compete in these matches and win them now. But it's going to take a lot more practice and work to get everything totally together. And we have to stop making so many errors."
The Colony continues in district this week with matches Tuesday against Prosper (results not available as of press time) and at 6:30 p.m. Friday at Frisco Liberty.
"We're doing more of the same to get ready," Harrod said. "We're focusing on running the right side of our offense and getting more attack there and are also consistently working on our touch-blocks. We have to be able to block the outsides on the other teams to slow them down a bit."
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