A non-league and a league match this week for the Pahranagat Valley girls, and then a rare weekend off.
The girls lost to the Mustangs 3-0 on Tuesday and were to play league newcomer Liberty Baptist on Thursday.
This was the second time facing 2A Southern League co-leader The Meadows. The teams had met at the Boulder City Invitational in September with Meadows winning 2-0. This time though, it was a much tougher match. Scores were 22-25, 22-25, 19-25.
Alamo coach Ginger Whipple said “We played them much better this time. Down in Boulder, we didn’t have the experience. I changed a little bit on the lineup, I put my best defender on the back, and it worked better for us. Still, we need to work more on our serve-receive. I think we gave up 14-15 points just on that alone. You can’t give up that many points when you’re playing a good team like The Meadows (16-2-1). But I was impressed with our defense that got a lot of digs from the hard hits of Meadows”
Mustangs coach Stephanie Heller also said the Lady Panthers (15-9-2) played tougher. “They have a really strong offense and rely on their outside hitters a lot. However, I felt we kind of took them out of their passing game on serve-receive, forcing them to do a lot of setting and out-of-system play. That was a real key for us.”
Next week, Oct. 17, PVHS play at Lincoln County.
Last week for Homecoming, the Lady Panthers played Indian Springs (2-5, 1-3) and won the match 3-0. Scores were not that competitive after the first set, 25-19, 25-5, 25-10.
“We were a little wound up in the first set,” Whipple said. “Made a lot of errors and gave them quite a few points. I was impressed with Indian Springs, they had some good diggers. They got to our hits and even blocked quite a few. But they did struggle with our serves and didn’t really have much offense. I was happy with our serves, they were pretty consistent.”
Nevertheless, she said, “We had to play to beat them, but I think they kind of shut down in the second and third set.”
She said the team has been working lately on hit placement, having the hitters put the ball into where the holes are, “a little more finesse.”
Sometimes Whipple might instruct the hitters to target one particular place or opponent and hit the ball there over and over again. “We do emphasize that, and what we are aiming for, a given spot or a given person.”
Senior Ashlyn Wadsworth is the setter for the Lady Panthers this season, a position she had played only a little bit last year, but says she likes it. “It’s super fun. I like it because I touch the ball every play.” She explained for the setter, it is “to get our feet set toward the hitter and know where to push the ball, either outside or to the middle. I actually call the play, verbally communicate with the other players. I can decide if I want to set outside, middle, right or left.” And she’ll keep doing that as long as the season lasts.