SYCAMORE – The Sycamore girls volleyball team improved to 3-1 on the season, downing Aurora Central Catholic in straight sets, 27-25, 25-20, on Thursday.
Despite the Spartans sweeping the Chargers, Sycamore coach Jennifer Charles said her squad looked a little flat at times.
“I think that because we had such a high intensity game on Tuesday, that may have played a role,” Charles said. “We’re going to be playing two, three, four matches a week. They have to make sure they come back prepared and ready to go each match.”
The powerful offense that the Spartans often rely on was inconsistent throughout the match. However, the Spartans found a way to win without it.
“One thing I wanted to do better today than we did on Tuesday was blocking,” Charles said. “We got back in the gym and really focused on blocking, especially on outside attacks. We fine-tuned some things and made some changes, but now we are going to get back into the gym and put both things together.”
Junior blocker Hunter Morgan came up with the game-winning kill in the second game by placing the ball perfectly between the Chargers’ block and their back row.
“I saw it and just read and reacted,” Morgan said. “I saw it was open, and I just wanted to put it down for the game-winner. With free balls, I like to run different types of plays.”
Senior outside hitter Faith Reynolds said that her team’s intensity has another gear than what it showed Thursday.
“The intensity can definitely go up a notch from this game,” Reynolds said. “I feel like we were just flat and using our tiredness as an excuse. That’s no excuse in reality. We need to pick it up and put all of our energy into these 25 points and do our best.”
Aurora Central Catholic (1-4) gave the Spartans a scare in both games. After the first game needed 27 points to be decided, the second game saw Sycamore jump out to an early 12-5 lead. The Chargers eventually closed the gap, making it a 21-18 game late.
“We have a very, very young team this year, and consistency is going to be the thing that we figure out,” Chargers coach Janelle Pritchett said. “We have the ability. ... But we have to find a way to get over the youthfulness of our team.”
By the numbers: Sycamore survived a 15-11 Chargers run in the second game before closing out the final two points to win it.
They said it: “Even on our slow days, we find a way,” Reynolds said.