It was a long hard, weekend of play for the Mariners varsity volleyball team. They lost to Grace Christian on Thursday, won against Houston on Friday and lost again Saturday to Anchorage Christian School.
All was not lost, however. Playing younger, newer players, as well as team veterans, the Mariners were able to work on their teamwork and communication. They also took a step out of their comfortable playing positions.
“There were some very good things that happened over the weekend — younger players stepped up and got some good playing time and helped the team, more experienced players had to show leadership on the court and the team had to learn more about trying to read the other team and adjust to try to find their weakness,” Head Coach Beth Trowbridge said in an email Sunday night.
“We did this to varying success. We weren’t always eager to try new things which caused us trouble against a couple of the tougher teams,” she said.
The match against Grace Christian was lost in three games, with scores of 25-13, 25-17 and 25-13. Larsen Fellows lead the team with six kills and two service aces. Maryhana Bowe, Maggie Larue and Malina Fellows each added two kills. Defensively Izabelle Hagge had six digs and a serve receive that was nearly perfect.
On Friday, the Mariners won against Houston in all three games: 25-18, 25-21, 25-15. Larsen Fellows led the team in kills with nine, only one error, and aggressive service. She, along with Bowe and McKi Needham, had a combined 18 aces. Bowe and Malina Fellows had a combined seven kills. Larue had 14 digs and solid serve receive.
On Saturday, the Homer team faced ACS in Anchorage. The teams volleyed the win before Homer finally lost in the fifth game. With Homer winning the first and third game, the scores for that match were 25-22 Homer, 25-23 ACS, 25-13 Homer, 25-14 ACS and 15-10 ACS. The team played well, but needed more consistency for a stronger stand against that opponent, said Trowbridge.
Mariners were served well with Larsen Fellows and Malina Fellows having four aces each. Needham and Bowe both scored three aces and Kelly Leibers had one ace.
Larsen Fellows led the team with nine kills, followed by Leibers and Malina Fellows each with four kills. Needham and Bowe had three kills and only one error between them. Defensively, Larue was quick in the back row and had 27 digs. Larsen Fellows had 19 and Jenna Dragoo played a solid defense adding 12 more digs. Bowe was at the net with four solo blocks and five block assists.
“It was a very defensive match, meaning there were lots of long rallies and not a lot of hard hits,” said Trowbridge. “
“So, letting down in hustle at times or making too many unforced errors made the difference in a long match against fairly even teams.”
The Mariners played hard, however, and Trowbridge was not disappointed by the team.
“Overall I was pleased with how they played and how they worked together. Our serve receive passing was strong and steady we just lacked some offensive power and/or savvy to convert our defensive efforts into points,” she said.
Next up for the Mariners is the Valdez Invitational Tournament at Valdez this weekend.
“It will be another great opportunity to work on building skills and gaining confidence. … We worked on that this week and we definitely saw some good hustle plays during the matches,” Trowbridge said.