Mistakes cost South Tahoe volleyball in losses to Lowry, Fallon
After a hot start to league play, mistakes caught up to the South Tahoe volleyball team. The Vikings dropped matches in consecutive days to Lowry and Fallon last Friday and Saturday, Sept. 18-19, a pair of four-set defeats that evened their league record.
“We have to learn to be more patient, cut down on the mistakes and take advantage of the fact that we’re an extremely strong hitting team and a good serving team,” Vikings coach Dan McLaughlin said. “Once we get all this together, we’re going to be solid. We just have a little work to do.”
South Tahoe (3-3, 2-2 I-A Northern) let errors wipe out a strong offensive performance on the road at Fallon on Saturday, Sept. 19. The Vikings lost to the Greenwave in four sets 22-25, 18-25, 25-23, 17-25 for a second straight defeat.
“We’re working to become better at making mistakes, but the mistakes continue to plague us,” McLaughlin said.
Fallon (7-8, 1-2) scored 98 points en route to its first league victory, half of which came on South Tahoe errors. The Vikings committed 21 hitting errors, 14 service errors and 14 serve-receive errors against the Greenwave.
South Tahoe had 33 kills in the loss, including 15 from outside hitter Novel Moses to go along with an ace. Outside hitter Paige Naccarato added seven kills and an ace, and middle hitter McKenna Brewer had five kills and two blocks.
Defensively, libero Kaitlynn Watson finished with a match-high 29 digs to go along with a kill and three aces. Middle hitter Louisa Stelzriede added two blocks.
“We have discovered our offense, we just need to minimize our mistakes and we’re going to be rock solid,” McLaughlin said.
A night earlier, the Vikings had their three-match winning streak snapped with a home defeat. South Tahoe fell to an athletic Lowry team in four sets 17-25, 22-25, 25-23, 23-25 at the Blue Gym.
“They didn’t show they’re a better team; they just showed they’re a more mature team,” McLaughlin said. “They showed maturity and we showed immaturity.”
The Vikings dropped the first two frames before rallying to narrowly capture the third set. In the fourth set, South Tahoe used a 5-1 run capped by a Naccarato ace to pull within one at 24-23, but Buckaroos middle hitter Juliana Velasco secured the match with a kill on the ensuing point.
“We couldn’t make the runs work — we ended every run with an error,” McLaughlin said. “We kept getting to the top of the mountain and then sliding down. We just could not get over it.”
South Tahoe returns to action Wednesday, Sept. 23, when it hosts league-leading Dayton (14-0, 4-1) at the Blue Gym. First serve is scheduled for 6 p.m.