There is little margin for error when it comes to South Kitsap’s volleyball team.
That is why first-year coach CJ Scott stressed the importance of not giving away points before Wednesday night’s 25-20, 21-25, 25-21, 25-22 nonleague win against Sequim.
Specifically, he was referring to serves. If there was one area where South outperformed Sequim, it was there. South even had an opportunity to rally for a win during the second game partially because of Sequim’s five service errors. But South had three in that game, including one on the final point, that ruined its comeback hopes.
That changed in the final two games as South only had one service error during the rest of the match.
“That’s what we talked about — getting our serves in and making the other team stop you,” Scott said.
South (2-0) was led by senior outside hitter Hannah Spohn, who had 10 kills and two aces, and setter Mikaela Strutz’s 13 assists. Strutz, a senior, had one of the pivotal plays in the match when her kill just inside the line gave South a 24-22 lead in the decisive game.
That helped South prevail in a close match for the second consecutive night. Scott won his opener 19-25, 25-11, 12-25, 25-17, 15-11 on Tuesday at Kingston. He said the lopsided scores from that match were a result of poor serves from both squads.
But in both matches, he praised his team’s ability to rebound from struggles.
“That’s what I like about them,” Scott said. “We might not have the size, speed and talent, but they’re going to keep playing hard. They’re not going to quit.”
Junior middle blocker Shannon Laupola believes the team just needs some time to become acquainted. In addition to having a new coaching staff, she said the lack of returning players means everyone still is adjusting.
“Getting a lot of chemistry on the court is a key element to us,” said Laupola, who had five blocks against Sequim. “A lot of our seniors left and a lot of us haven’t played together before.”
Scott likes the contributions some of his newcomers are making, though. That includes Zoe Conger, who had 15 digs versus Sequim.
“Zoe Conger digs everything,” he said. “She gives us an opportunity to score a lot.”
South will need that as it enters Class 4A Narrows League play Tuesday against Stadium. Laupola is excited to see how the Wolves fare against higher-level competition.
“I’m feeling pumped,” she said. “I’m ready for the season.”