BY GREG FLINT
---- — COVINGTON, Ind. - It was a tough night for area teams in the Covington volleyball sectional. The Attica Red Ramblers lost to Rockville in four games while the North Vermillion Falcons lost in three to Lafayette Central Catholic.
Attica faced an uphill battle much of the night as they struggled at the start of most of their games with Rockville. They fell behind 7-0, 4-0 and 5-0 in their first.
The positive for the team was that they pulled even in all their games, but they were only able to win the third.
“Yes, it was nice to get the lead,” said Rockville coach Jennifer Pakiz about the opening margins, “but it would have been even better if we’d kept it.”
The first game looked as if it might be an easy win for Rockville as Maddie Shaffer served them to that 7-0 lead. Shaffer was effective all night and Pakiz explained why.
“She was serving to open spots on the floor,” she said. “We’ve been working on that recently.”
Star Hart of Attica pulled her team back into it with a seven-point service run of her own to give the Ramblers a 17-13 lead, but the Rox came back to win 25-23.
Game two also saw Attica make a run when the scores got into the teens - forcing a Rockville time out, but once again, the Rox went on a scoring sprint to pull out the win.
In the third game, the same early Rockville push and Attica reply led to a game that saw the Ramblers down 21-24 when they got the serve.
Five points later, game three went to the Ramblers 26-24. In game four, the momentum carried forward and Attica did not fall behind.
Instead, they took the early lead and it was Rockville that had to find a reply. They did so, opening a four-point lead midway through the game, but once again, Attica made a comeback.
The Ramblers pulled within one, but then fell back 20-24. This time there was no late rally and the Rox pulled out the game 25-20.
“We played them a lot better this time than we did before,” said Pakiz “but we still didn’t play as well as we can.”
Asked to look ahead, Pakiz said, “We’re not going to change anything no matter who we play. “We’re just going to play our game the best we can.”
In the second contest of the night, North Vermillion fell to Lafayette Central Catholic 25-10, 25-10 and 25-15.
Falcon coach Debbie Chew said, “We knew what we were getting into, playing them. We set a goal of getting to double digits in each game and we reached that.”
She also pointed out that her team won several long volleys, “and for us, that’s a victory. It means that we kept fighting.”
Chew told some of the other goals for her team.
“We decided we’d keep our heads up no matter if we were down two or twenty,” she said. “We said we were going to have fun out there.”
Watching her squad smiling, laughing and slapping hands late in the third game, it was obvious that her team was doing just that.
“We had a team this year that was competitive in most games we played,” Chew said. “Our skills improved as the season went on and I’m proud of how my kids worked and the attitude they had.”
Greg Flint is a freelance writer/photographer for the Commercial-News. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org