U.P. Volleyball Sweeps Southern Lee
BY F.W. MANNING II
Special to The Pilot
The Union Pines volleyball team swept Cape Fear Valley Conference rival Southern Lee in three sets Tuesday, 25-10, 25-6, 25-14.
With the victory, the homestanding Vikings improved to 13-6 overall and 8-3 in CFVC action and have won seven of their last eight league matches.
Customarily, the last regular season home game is senior night. But Union Pines does not have a senior on its roster. According to head coach Leslie Fish, it is the first time she can remember not having a single senior on her team.
"The first year I coached I had six seniors, and in 2008 we had six seniors," Fish said. "So to know that all these girls will be back as Vikings next year is an awesome feeling. It is just so exciting when you think about that, plus the prospect of some very good younger players moving up."
Junior captain Morgan Bridgers had a match high 19 assists for Union Pines. Bridgers' fellow junior co-captain Crystal Hicks led the team with seven kills and five digs.
"For the most part this group has been playing together for a long time," Hicks said. "We all know each others' tendencies, have great chemistry and work really hard in practice. Each person on the team knows their role and gives all they have, because we don't want to to depend too much on any one person to win matches."
Meanwhile, junior Anna Sadler continued her recent stretch of steady play as an outside hitter, finishing with five kills along with two aces.
"We knew that this match would usually be senior night," Sadler said, "but not having any seniors on the team has made us work that much harder to prove we are capable of winning. Last year was more of a bonding experience with lots of growth, but this year it seems like we have matured, and now it is the real deal."
Sophomores Tyler Ross and Brittany Erickson also had strong showings for the Vikes. Ross racked up five kills, three blocks and three digs, while Erickson had four digs and three aces.
The Lady Vikings have a week off before concluding the regular season, next Tuesday, in their CFVC closer at Douglas Byrd.
According to Fish, the time off has both its advantages and disadvantages this late in the season but that sometimes a rest is better than a practice.
"At this point in the season I want the girls to keep up their focus and intensity on every point no matter who they are playing," said Fish. "They have done a good job of doing that and staying motivated lately.
"I am going to be able to get them a little time off, so they will not have practice for homecoming on Friday. That way they should be ready to go by the time playoffs roll around next week."
Contact F.W. Manning II at firstname.lastname@example.org.
More like this story