By: BOBBY COZZIE
The young Titans volleyball team’s intense and energetic start was not enough to defeat their cross-town rival, Bethel College Pilots, in their opening game of the season last Wednesday night.
Despite playing a highly competitive game, mental errors proved too much for the Titans to ever get to more than close, as they fell in consecutive sets 21-25, 23-25, and 21-25.
“We work a lot in practice on some of those being disciplined plays,” Coach Ashmore-Pott said. “We spent the first week of our pre-season working on defense and tonight we saw kind of a lack of discipline in the defense. That’s something they’ve worked very hard at and they will continue to work very hard at these next couple of practices, but they know what they need to do. They just need to be kind of disciplined in their own mind to take care of it.”
Even with the mental errors and finding themselves down at several points throughout the game, the Titans were able to fire themselves up and rally, which Ashmore-Pott credits to the team’s overall energetic nature.
“They did get down but it’s their energy and their fire that they bring everyday to practice, they bring to the gym every time,” said Ashmore-Pott. “One person starts talking and the rest just follow them.”
There were many bright spots on offense where the Titans had a good mix of contributions from key returners as well as some of the team’s new additions. Junior Sierra Conklin led the team with 12 kills and freshman Tailor Schultheis added 9 more.
“I think it’s going to take us a little bit to kind of get in our rhythm and figure out who we are as a team but I think the youth is definitely going to be a very good thing,” Ashmore-Pott said. “The team is all very talented across the board. We have 15 players that can step in at any time and play any position. So it’s great that it’s a battle every day at practice.”