Corydon Central clips North, Salem
As its done most of the year, Corydon Central’s volleyball team got off to a solid start, faded late, then got back to business when the cards were on the table.
This time, the roller coaster ride known as the Lady Panther Express carded a big Mid-Southern Conference victory over visiting rival North Harrison last night, 25-9, 25-13, 25-20.
‘I don’t think they know how good they are,’ Corydon coach Kim Briscoe said of her team. ‘I’ve seen North Harrison play four or five times now and they’ve steadily improved each time they’ve hit the floor.
‘We won the first two games pretty easily and started the third game with a missed serve and things went down from there. We’re still having trouble understanding that momentum is not busted by other teams, but by us.’
The third game was the most competitive of the night, with several lead changes throughout.
Dana Beaven, Stannye Wolfe, Chrissy Crecelius and Cassie Mathews helped push Corydon (17-5, 5-1) to a 17-12 lead before North rallied to 20-19 on a back row attack by Megan Dean and kills by Cassie Milburn and Kalina Kasprzyka.
The comeback fell short, however, as North committed a couple of hitting errors down the stretch.
‘We just came out flat and it took us too long to recover,’ North coach Wes Briscoe said. ‘Once we started talking and yelling where the blocks were, Kalina got going and Cassie just put the ball through the floor.’
The Lady Cats were without the services of outside hitter/defensive specialist Jenna Schneider, who twisted her ankle in warm-ups.
‘I would say her being out was probably an issue for (North) early on,’ Corydon’s coach said. ‘When you take a spoke out of the wheel, there tends to be a little bit of a wobble.
‘After those first two games, (Wes) switched his lineup a little bit and gave them more balance and it paid off.’
North’s coach praised the backline play of Dean, Bree Shroyer and Whitney Wetzel and the free-swinging Heather Irish out front.
‘Megan Dean propelled us early with her serves and Whitney and Heather in that third game really kept us close.’
— In a volleyball match that ventured well into the evening on Thursday, host Corydon Central dominated Salem.
The visiting Lady Lions showed up late, and unbeknownst to Corydon coach Kim Briscoe, brought along their ‘C’ team.
Already running behind, Briscoe offered up a plan to have both the ‘C’ and junior varsity teams play simultaneously on adjoining courts so the varsity match could start a touch earlier.
Salem skipper Chuck Scherzinger would have nothing of it.
So, after six undercard games and a bloody nose given to Salem JV coach Paul Robbins from one of his players during warm-ups, the varsity squads took to the court.
The Lady Panthers made quick work of the visitors, 25-13, 25-11 and 25-16, with the final point coming at 10:25 p.m.
Salem led in the very early going of the first two sets and then held a 12-10 lead midway through the third. Outside of that, it was all Corydon Central.
Briscoe said she felt like her team should have beaten Salem by more.
‘We are so good at playing at the opponent’s level, and I don’t know if we just feel sorry for the other team or what. We’re just looking for three consecutive games where we play good volleyball,’ she said.
‘We lose five matches to ranked teams early in the season ‘ and play pretty well against them ‘ and then we come in against scrappy teams who don’t have the guns that we have and we don’t play to our potential.
‘Our guns just don’t stay loaded. We’ll play well for one or two games, and then we let up. It’s like we don’t understand that there is another volleyball team on the other side of the net that wants to win just as much as we do. We’re just looking for consistency.’
Defensively, Miranda Melton, Jessi Rhodes and Cassie Mathews provided strong back line play all evening. At the net, Dana Beaven, Leslie Radcliff and Chrissy Crecelius provided most of the offense.
Briscoe said her left side hitters had an off night, but she expects that to change in the coming matches.
‘I still haven’t found that magical chemistry yet. We’re two-thirds of the way though the season, and I would say that’s the case with most coaches. The bottom line is that there won’t be any excuses in October. October is about doing everything right and having that chemistry,’ Corydon’s coach explained.
The victory over the Lady Lions pushed Corydon’s record to 15-5 and 4-1 in the conference.
‘We have the potential to be ranked in the next couple of weeks,’ Briscoe predicted. ‘If we can go to Boonville and win that tournament, then go up to Jennings County and win that tournament and then give Floyd Central all they want, we could get ranked. Again, it’s just a question of consistency.’