Due to the unusual floor situation at the Eads High School gymnasium the Eads volleyball teams—middle school and high school alike—will not have use of the gym for volleyball practices or games for the entire season. Instead, they are currently practicing in the elementary gym where the back line is against the walls and the ceiling is very low. It is going to make for a tough season for both the coaching staff and players and it’s also going to take a great deal of grit and determination—and patience—to persevere through.
The Eads volleyball schedule is already in shambles as Trey Eder, Eads Athletic Director, also has to work around the Wiley softball schedule as five of the nine girls on the Eads volleyball team are also on the Wiley softball team. In addition, Wiley’s gym is not playable at this time, as well.
Eads finally had their season opener at Genoa-Hugo on Friday evening and came away with a 3-1 loss to the Lady Pirates. Eads started out slowly and it was evident that they weren’t used to the depth perception of a larger gymnasium and higher ceiling. They lost the first game by the score of 19-25, and the second one 15-25. But, they would come back into the match in game three that saw Eads take the lead and play even for most of the way with the Pirates, winning 25-21, on a momentum killer missed serve right by the Pirates. The Lady Eagles continued to battle in the fourth and final game but lost 20-25.
Eads is extremely young with one senior, Katie Johnson, on the team. There are two juniors including Landri Tuttle and Alessandra Paez, then after that the rest of the team is comprised of sophomores and freshmen. The inexperience played a big role in the loss, but the fact that they will be challenged all year should help them develop quickly.
The Pirates were led by two hitters with senior Caryn Hale pounding out 11 kills and freshman Rylee Corn adding 10 kills. Both hitters were successfully assisted by sophomore Rhegan Sitzman with 31 assists.
For Eads it was sophomore team leader Kara Wilson who led the way for Eads with 9 kills, 2 ace serves, 2 blocks and 17 digs.
Freshman Anna Wollert also added 9 kills in the contest and picked up 14 digs.
Junior floor leader Aless Paez added 2 ace serves, 21 digs, and distributed 12 assists in the contest.
Lexi Shotton added 2 aces, Landri Tuttle got down 3 blocks, Bailey Sierra added 15 digs, while Tailee Weeks-Johnson added 15 digs and 12 assists.
A key stat to their loss to Genoa-Hugo was that the Eagles suffered through 27 serve receive errors while the Lady Pirates only had 9 errors.
On Wednesday, Aug. 30 Eads traveled to Seibert to take on the Hi-Plains Patriots and came away with a 3-0 loss to drop down to 2-0 on the season.
The Lady Patriots were an excellent defensive team and managed to control the front net for most of the game.
Eads had moments of good volleyball but just could not keep the ball alive while Hi-Plains picked up attack ball after attack ball waiting around until the Eagles made a mistake. Eads would lose in game scores of 25-16, 25-22, and 25-19.
Wilson, Weeks-Johnson, and Wollert each pounded down 6 kills to lead the offensive attack.
Paez had 16 assists and 14 digs. Katie Johnson, in the libero role, added 14 more digs.
Landri Tuttle denied 3 attacks and Shotton added 2 ace serves.
Eads will now have a busy weekend on the road as they travel to Sierra Grande (2-1) on Friday for a non-league contest. Then, on Saturday, Sept. 2, they’ll head back down to the south to take on the Kim/Branson group in another non-conference contest.