Kaitlin O’Connors of North Union jumps to hit the ball during a volleyball game against Buckeye Valley on Tuesday. The Lady Cats struggled with the Lady Barons, losing in four sets.
(Journal-Tribune photo by Sam Dillon)
In sports there are teams that like to get an early lead and hold on for a win. Then there are those that get motivated by being behind and play harder to get out front.
North Union’s volleyball team seem to fall into the latter category. The only problem is that sometimes that lead is just too much to overcome. Lady Cats coach Peg Curts also sees her players get more aggressive when they are down.
“As much as I hate it, yeah it seems to be that way,” she said. “We have stressed about being aggressive and trying to get out front first.”
Unfortunately for the Lady Cats, Tuesday was one of those matches where they just couldn’t claw back from a 25-15 first-set loss as Buckeye Valley defeated them 3-1.
“It is a struggle that we are battling with,” said Curts. “I don’t know if that is what causes the fire within them to have to build up to try to win, but ultimately sometimes it goes our way and sometimes it doesn’t and we get burnt.”
Set two was the Cats’ shinning moment of the match as each team battled back-and-forth for the lead all the way through the game.
Neither team broke under the pressure and the deadlock was finally broken when the Lady Cats picked up a point on the serve to make it 24-23.
With the ball on the serve, North Union volleyed with BV before Journey Blevins leaped from the floor and smashed the sphere to the back of the court to take set two, 25-23.
Set three brought back memories of the first game. The Lady Cats got out to an early lead, but the advantage was short-lived as the Lady Barons kept the pedal to the floor on their way to a 25-19 win and a 2-1 lead in sets.
The Lady Cats, being down in the match, used their come-from-behind mentality to keep set four a close contest. The lead continued to change hands point-after-point with no one paving a clear path to victory. BV later widened the point spread to four at 22-18.
The Lady Cats struggled to keep pace and a shot by BV’s front line fell to the floor between NU’s front and back line to win the match 3-1.
“We beat ourselves today,” said Curts. “We just didn’t play as well as we have in the last couple of games. They found our weaknesses and exploited them.”
The Lady Cats fell to 3-6 overall on the season and will return to action Thursday when they travel to River Valley.
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