Vike Netters Win Second Straight
Union Pines defeated the Southern Lee Cavaliers 25-19, 25-16, 22-25, 25-13, in a Cape Fear Valley conference volleyball match Thursday at Bob Ward Gymnasium.
It was the Vikings' second straight league victory as they are now 3-2 in the CFV and 5-8 overall. Earlier in the week Union Pines traveled to Fayetteville and earned a three-game sweep over league foe Westover.
Vike head coach Leslie Fish felt that her team's performance was crucial because it got them back over the .500 mark in their league and was the first time all season they had won back to back matches.
"This win is definitely a big confidence boost for us as we look to continue to compete within our conference," said Fish. Tonight my team's court movement was the best I have seen this year; also the girls looked like they were having more fun out there than in any other match we have played this year."
The season got off to a slow start for Fish and her youthful Viking team. Union Pines, which starts four sophomores, a freshman and a senior, began the year with four straight losses and five losses in the first six matches.
Fish credits the recent turnaround to improved communication on the court and better hustle by her players.
"It was great to see the girls all have smiles on their faces at the end, because that means they are out there having fun," Fish said. "We are a young team, and as we are growing what is important to me is that my players are enjoying the time they spend learning and playing the game."
Vike sophomore Morgan Bridgers put on a versatile display of skill in Thursday's match, collecting 34 service points, 17 assists and five kills. In the final game she had 11 straight service points to give the Vikings a commanding 12-2 edge.
Freshman Tyler Ross led Union Pines' with 14 kills, while also making nine digs.
Sophomore libero Lexi Byrd had a match-high 19 digs for the Lady Vikes, while Crystal Hicks (also a sophomore) continued her consistent production on the year for Union Pines, finishing with 10 kills and 11 digs.
"This was a big match for us," said Bridgers, "and I definitely think it is a big confidence booster to get two solid wins (in a row). We came in focused after watching the jayvees win. The way our junior varsity girls played made us step our game up and really want to work hard by leaving it all out on the court."
In the first match of the evening, the Viking junior varsity volleyball won in straight sets to run its record to 4-1 in CFV competition and 7-5 for the season.
Contact F.W. Manning II at 639-5481 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
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