PREP VOLLEYBALL: Nevada Union struggles early, can’t climb out of hole against El Dorado
The Lady Miners had a rough outing at Albert Ali Gymnasium Tuesday, falling in non-league action to the visiting El Dorado Cougars.
After winning six of their first 10 games this season, the Nevada Union girls volleyball team struggled early and often as they fell to El Dorado in straight sets, 25-19, 25-23, 25-23.
“The difference was we were just a little flat,” said Nevada Union head coach Chrys Dudek. “We weren’t doing the little things. We talk about being a good team versus being a great team, and there’s a lot of little things — shuffle steps to the ball, getting hits behind the ball, being aggressive at the net — that take you from being good to great, and we just weren’t great tonight.”
The Lady Miners (6-5) opened the match with El Dorado (6-1) with two quick points, but the Cougars responded with seven straight points to grab the first set edge. The Lady Miners wouldn’t lead again until the third set.
“They came out serving aggressively, they were serving right at our weak spot and they ran off a few points right at the start and that started us in a hole,” said Dudek.
El Dorado extended it’s first set lead to 18-10 and, despite some strong play from NU’s Hannah Voboril, went on to win the set 25-19.
In the second set, Nevada Union once again fell behind as El Dorado surged out to a 22-13 lead. The Lady Miners dug in and rallied for five straight points, highlighted by an ace from Lauren Engelking and a Greta Kramer kill, to pull within four points. But, a couple of NU errors put El Dorado at match point and the Cougars would eventually win the set 25-23 on a block at the net.
In the third and final set, El Dorado grabbed control early by jumping out to a 10-4 lead, but the Lady Miners charged back with an ace by Kelsey Arvidson, two aces by Celeste Picone, a kill by Alex Cook and blocks from Kramer and Taylor Johnston to grab a 17-15 lead. But, El Dorado responded with six straight points to go up 21-17. The Cougars extended their lead to 24-19, but, the Lady Miners refused to go quitely, battling back to within one, but eventually lost 25-23.
“Usually there are a couple of girls that can go out that and provide that spark for us, but we just weren’t finding that flow,” said Dudek. “I think part of it was because El Dorado came out and they weren’t missing serves, they weren’t making very many mistakes, and we weren’t playing our game.”
The win for El Dorado improves the reigning Sierra Valley Conference champs to 6-1 this season.
The loss drops the Lady Miners to 6-5 overall.
In junior varsity action, the Lady Miners topped the Cougars, 25-17, 25-9. The Nevada Union freshmen team also beat El Dorado, 25-10, 25-13.
To contact Sports Editor Walter Ford, call 530-477-4232 or email email@example.com.
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