The Rolla volleyball team (3-3) traveled to Jefferson City for a match on Tuesday, Sept. 11. The Lady Bulldogs had a rough hitting night, particularly in the second set, in a 20-25, 13-25 loss.
The Lady Bulldogs played a tough first set on Tuesday night and hung in the match thanks to 13 kills, but defensive mistakes led to a 20-25 loss. Rolla's struggles came out in the second set, where they managed just two kills on 31 attempts and 10 errors. That led to a more lopsided score in a 13-25 loss in the set. Defensively, Rolla had more missteps than usual, with 14 errors and 24 digs. Head coach Stephanie Pritchett pointed out that the errors were an outlier so far this season.
"That's 10 points directly to the other team and a lot of balls sent over that had absolutely no great effect on their defense," said the Rolla head coach. "That is definitely unusual for our team, so chalk it up to a really badly timed poor offensive night.
"Jefferson City had a great hitter that gave us fits on blocking and defense," continued coach Pritchett. "We were able to rally and usually did not get beat on the first play on defense, but defense struggled during the rally."
Shelby Ply led the charge on a tough offensive night with six kills and seven earned points to go along with a pair of block assists and a dig. Megan Brown added four kills and two digs, while Rebecca Janke had three kills and four digs. Sophie Parsons led the team in assists with eight, while adding a kill and an ace, while fellow setter Loran Pritchett had five assists, two aces, two block assists and four digs. Sophie Moreland added eight digs for Rolla.
Coach Pritchett said her Lady Bulldogs will need to up their intensity to get back into the win column in their next match.
"When it comes down to it, we actually weren't aggressive enough. Volleyball is a game of momentum and when you struggle, it's easy to lose confidence that the next play, dig, or hit will be successful. The answer is not to back down but to keep going at it in aggressive and smart ways," said the Rolla head coach. "That's part of life, we will discuss things and then we will move on. Next game won't look like that. We will build on how we handled the adversity and look forward to meeting them again in district play!"
The JV also took a tough loss on the night, falling 13-25, 14-25, but the freshmen were able to pull out a hard-fought win 19-25, 25-23, 25-23.
Rolla will return to their home court on Thursday, Sept. 13 with a matchup against Union. They will then play in the West Plains Tournament this weekend.