The Homer volleyball team fell to the visiting Kardinals on Tuesday night while Kenai continued their winning streak this season.
The Mariners won the first set 25-22, but the Kardinals went on to top Homer with scores of 25-18, 25-16 and 25-13.
“I thought we started slow,” Kenai head coach Tracie Beck said. “And that can happen, definitely. But then they played very consistent after that first match. We haven’t lost a game yet so that’s kind of nice that that’s off our shoulders a little bit.”
Beck said the players have been putting a lot of pressure on themselves. She said it’s important for them to enjoy the game.
“I like the grit of this group of girls,” she said. “They are not afraid of adversity, and in this game when it’s tough teams like Homer, you can’t be fearful of it. You have to definitely enjoy the process. … Volleyball is a great game to teach — every sport is — to teach kids about life. And I hate to say it but a lot of these kids are going through, or have gone through, or will go through adversity, and to not be a afraid of it.”
Homer head coach Stephanie Carroll said the Mariners started strong in the first set, but dwindled from there. She said the team had confidence in that first set.
“I think that’s been our biggest thing this year is playing with confidence,” Carroll said. “We still have some girls that are learning and so it kind of (goes) up and down.”
Carroll said she thinks the Mariners lost focus in the second set and couldn’t get it back from there.
“As it went on they just kind of wore us down, and we didn’t react as well to their hitting in the later sets,” she said.
For Homer, Laura Inama had 12 kills and two aces, Brooke Shafer had 12 assists and an ace, Hannah Hatfield had nine assists and Katlyn Vogl had seven kills. Tonda Smude had three kills and two blocks, Gracie Gummer had three kills and a block, and Amber Hull had two kills and one block.
For Kenai, Kaylee Lauritsen led with 34 assists, 16 digs and four aces. Abby Every had 18 digs and 11 kills and two, Bethany Morris had 27 digs, 12 kills and three aces, and Andie Galloway had 18 digs and nine kills.
The Mariners are next scheduled to host both Nikiski and Soldotna High School in the Homer Jamboree this Saturday. Spectators will be limited to parents only. The event will be streamed on the Homer Mariners YouTube channel as well.