BANGS— The Bangs Lady Dragons took a three-set sweep from Class 2A Miles Tuesday night, dropping their home opener 25-19, 25-23 and 25-11.
Despite the Lady Bulldogs making quick work of the Lady Dragons, Bangs first-year coach Callie Molloy said her team has grown leaps and bounds since its preseason game against Gustine and some of that showed on the court as her team worked their way out of a few deep slumps Tuesday.
“We went up and swung hard. Just because they were covering good defense didn’t mean we were going to stop swinging,” Molloy said. “We tried to pick apart their defense and find their holes. Our hitters are getting better at spot hitting and picking up holes on the court but, unfortunately, we just could not pull off that win.”
The Lady Dragons found themselves in a deep hole to begin the game one. Down 15-4 and having a block by junior hitter Trenedi Deal reversed, Bangs found traction after Deal rebounded and made another block on the subsequent exchange. Bangs then went on a 13-7 run with multiple kills by senior outside hitter Kenzie Baker and aces by junior middle blocker Kyra Smith, but it was not enough to hold off match point.
“If you saw our scrimmages or our first game, then you would see we are miles away from what we were,” Molloy said. “They’ve improved so much. They improve daily. If we can get consistent, then we can go into district pretty strong.”
The Lady Dragons picked up in game two where they left off in game one, building a strong lead off a pair of aces by senior right-side hitter Jacie Blisard and kills by setter Halle Lance, Baker and Deal. Miles regained the momentum on a few untimely Bangs mistakes and eventually tied the game 20-20, setting up match point on a two-hit call, then capping off the 25-23 victory with an ace.
“We were quick and started to move as a unit, like a family on the court,” Molloy said. “We’re starting to trust each other to do our jobs, that our defense is going to be there no matter where our hitters are and that our hitters are going to be there. That’s all about trust and building a family on and off the court.”
After coming up short in game two, the Lady Dragons seemed to deflate in game three. Kills by outside hitter Jacee Miller, Deal, Baker and a block by Lance were Bangs’ only offensive production as Miles cruised to take the game, and the match, 25-11.
With the loss, the Lady Dragons fall to 0-9, but Kyra Smith believes their lack of wins has little to do with a lack of talent and more to do with a lack of communication.
“We’re young so it’s about getting people where they need to be and figuring out who needs to be where,” Smith said. “… We communicate well when we start getting rallies. Everybody shows that they want it and they’re where they’re supposed to be.”