Darren Doyle, story and photos
The ECHS Lady Cat Volleyball team sure didn't fool around during last night's season opener in a heated district match up against Whitesville Trinity, a team that EC hadn't defeated in 5 years...until last night. It took all 5 sets and close, back-and-forth scoring from each team, but the Lady Cats held on for their first win of the season.
"I've already met one goal for the year in our very first game," said Senior co-captain Laney Meredith. "It's gonna be a good year."
ECHS jumped out to great start, winning the first set 25-15, however, the next set was neck-and-neck from the beginning. Sophomore Mikayla Lindsey slammed one home to break a tie match at 14-13, but the lead wouldn't last. Trinity continued to tie or creep ahead until they went on a 6-1 run that took over the momentum, allowing them to eventually win the set, 25-22.
Set 3 was a repeat of the first set as the Lady Cats took control of things yet again, handling the Lady Raiders with ease and winning 25-15. Oddly enough, set 4 was a carbon-copy of set 2 with only 1 or 2 points separating things until Trinity jumped on a commanding 7-2 run that allowed them to win the set and tie the game at 2 sets each.
The 5th and final set (which goes to 15 not 25) would be a completely different story as the Lady Cats showed no mercy to their guests as they poured on a 15-3 slaughter that caused the Lady Raiders to hang their heads for the last few points. Everything worked for ECHS, nothing worked at all for Trinity, and the Lady Cats took care of their district foe in 5 sets, something EC fans saw as long overdue.
"Last night set the bar for us," said Senior co-captain MaryChris Waddell. "We know what we can accomplish and how we have to accomplish it. As long as we stick together and stay a team, this year will be great for us."
Coach Brad Sullivan gained his first official win as a head coach. "You never want to lose the first game/opener," he said. "We came together as a team. It was a battle for sure, but we knew they would make a run like they always do."
Sullivan said the key to the win was that the girls played their game and didn't try to do too much. "Volleyball is getting tougher every year. We'll enjoy this win, but there are still a lot of games left."
The Lady Cats play this weekend in Owensboro at the Apollo Summer Slam Tournament. The girls will have opportunities to play several games in the pool play tournament. We'll have updates as they're available.