|Sat, Dec 21, 2013 01:33 PM
|Issue of December 18, 2013
September 04, 2013 | 02:04 PM
The Floyd Central Lady Highlanders gave their coach, Bart Powell, an easy, stress-free night for his birthday, dismantling the host Lady Panthers of Corydon Central in three games. The Lady Highlanders are currently ranked No. 5 in class 4A.
"We haven't really worked on anything offensively yet, and I'm not going to for another five days to be exact," Powell said. "Next Wednesday, we'll start working on offense. Our passing and serve-receive is much better than it was last year, which makes us a much better team."
Corydon's Payton Windell swatted a shot in game two of the Lady Panthers' 0-3 loss to Floyd Central. Windell finished with 8 kills for the match. Photo by Wade Bell (click for larger version)
"They can afford to play club ball, and they do," Corydon Central coach Kim Briscoe said. "That's the moral of the story. There's nothing else you can say. They didn't play their best volleyball but they swung real well tonight. We struggled just doing basic volleyball stuff, so we'll be alright."
Corydon Central came into the match winning their first three games but lost to Perry Central last Tuesday night in three.
"Those teams were not as challenging as the game of volleyball is supposed to be," Briscoe said of the first three outings. "We were just trying to find some rhythm and find out who could play where. We're still searching for that perfect lineup but, on a given night, the lineup has to change based on the opponent's attacking."
"We didn't play well at Perry," she said. "We played better tonight. If we had played at Perry like we did tonight, we probably would have beat Perry. That's just the difference in high school kids showing up."
Floyd Central began the match by launching itself to a 7-3 lead in game one. Corydon Central pulled themselves back in the game when Payton Windell killed to score and Floyd Central hit into the net. From there, the Lady Highlanders launched a major offensive, outscoring the Lady Panthers 7-0 to lead 16-6, with Sydney Engle swatting in three service aces late in the run. Corydon Central failed to regain any momentum and fell 25-10.
"I thought we played very complacent at times without any focus, and that's just how the game is played," Briscoe said. "We don't see a lot of swingers like that in our current schedule because we're a 3A program. That's just kind of the way that it is. We have a lot of kids that play multiple sports. A lot of those kids just play volleyball. That's a huge difference."
Bowman pushed the Lady Highlanders to an 8-0 lead to begin game two. The Floyd Central junior, who already had four kills in game one, added three more to her total in the first eight points. Chelsea John finally got Corydon Central on the board with a block to score. Engle countered with a tip, but Reagan Mosley followed with a Corydon Central kill. At that point, Floyd Central began a second barrage, scoring the next 10 points with Bowman serving. Corydon Central again failed to recover as Floyd Central dished out a 25-8 bruising.
Bowman, a junior, had a major summer experience playing on the U.S. Junior Olympic team and was named to the all-tournament team for her efforts.
"She was pretty quick," Powell said. "She was on the (Junior Olympics') two team, and the two team beat the one team and they beat Peru in the finals. They won the International Junior Olympics. She was named to the all-tournament team, so it's not a mistake that she's that good. She's that quick. Sydney Engle pounded a couple of balls I haven't seen her pound in a long time."
Corydon Central began game three with a stronger performance, getting out to a 4-1 lead over the Lady Highlanders. Corydon Central stayed up front until Floyd Central's Brooke Hinton tipped to tie the game at 6 and Corydon hit into the net handing the Lady Highlanders a 7-6 edge.
Corydon Central held its own, staying within two as Floyd Central misfired on two serves. The Lady Highlanders then launched another offensive, scoring the next seven points to lead 19-10. Corydon Central scored just three more points in the game as Floyd Central went on to get a 25-13 win.
"Corydon did a very nice job," Powell said. "They don't have the firepower that we've got, but they did a nice job digging some balls and they were very scrappy. The scoreboard doesn't indicate that, without question, I thought Corydon did a nice job."
"We did have some bright moments," Briscoe said. "I'm looking for six kids who want to play all the time. That's it, not a certain rotation. Play, and play hard."
Engle led the Lady Highlanders with 10 kills and three aces on serve. Bowman finished with nine kills and three aces, and Tierney Flaherty had six kills. Mikaila Humphrey had five kills, and Hinton had three kills and three aces on serve. Floyd Central had just 10 errors for the match, missed four serves and swatted in 13 aces.
Windell led Corydon Central with eight kills, and Mosley finished with six on the night. The Lady Panthers missed four serves but had only one service ace. Corydon Central finished with 14 errors.
"She's a very nice player," Powell said of Windell. "They're going to wear her out setting the ball. We're backing off the left side block, and we haven't really worked on that. We've been single block and middle. I don't feel like we can do that right now. We're going to have to get a better block up there. But (Windell) is a very nice player."
"She was one of the best hitters on the floor for sure," Briscoe said of her senior. "She's a complete volleyball player. Hopefully, she'll go on to scholarship somewhere. (Mosley) has those skills as well. Actually, we weren't getting her the ball enough. She struggled a little bit with back-row defense. Two kids can't play the whole court. That's what I felt like we were doing tonight.'
"We did make a lineup change tonight and actually it worked quite well," Briscoe said. "We just played a pretty powerful team tonight, and it was fun. It's still fun or I'm going to quit."