The Greenwood volleyball team’s offense isn’t a well-oiled machine yet, but coach Allen Whittinghill felt Tuesday’s 3-0 (25-16, 28-26, 25-15) senior night victory over visiting Warren East was a step in the right direction.
Greenwood (2-4 overall, 2-0 District 14) survived a tough test from the Lady Raiders in the second set before pulling away in set three to remain perfect in district play and bounce back from an 0-4 weekend in Louisville.
“I seriously thought with the layoff and not having practice that probably defense and passing was where we were going to struggle the most, but it’s been our offense,” Whittinghill said. “We made some changes from last year, have a freshman in the middle, but I thought our pieces were here. But thinking back to last year, it took a while to get our offense going. It took about a month into the season. This is all accelerated … and I thought tonight we started to get some good kills.”
Junior hitter Olivia Overmohle got the Lady Gators going with six kills in the first set as Greenwood closed with a 9-1 run to go up 1-0 in the match.
Warren East (2-1, 0-1) led for most of set two, with the advantage growing to 20-14 after a kill from Caroline Forrester. Greenwood came roaring back, going in front 23-22. Warren East regrouped and had three set points before the Lady Gators scored the final three points to secure the second set.
Greenwood pulled away early in the third set, using a 9-1 surge to build a 14-6 advantage. Warren East was unable to get closer than five the rest of the way.
“That’s happened to us for and against where if you take your shot and don’t win that second game or win that close win that, it is tough,” Whittinghill said. “I was just happy to be in that battle. I told the seniors that I was just happy to have the season and you get a senior night. March, it wasn’t looking so good. April, it wasn’t looking so good. We are happy to be here and then we are in a tough battle with a good crowd. They needed that experience. They needed their feet to the fire. They were able to come through, luckily.”
Senior Katie Howard led Greenwood with 16 kills. Overmohle added 14 kills, Aubrey Packer had five aces and Meg Gore finished with 25 assists.
“I just think we are mentally trying to stay focused on the little things,” Howard said. “I think we really (were) able to pull through.”
Forrester and Makaylah Cason had five kills each for Warren East.
“Emotionally, physically, we were giving it everything we had,” Warren East coach Sheila Yokley said. “These girls were bringing it. We made up our minds when we came in here today that it was whatever it takes and we were going after it. We just came up short. They’ve got so many weapons and they just wore us down. We gave it our best shot and I am so proud of all my kids. They played hard.”
Warren East will play at South Warren on Thursday. Greenwood will play Elizabethtown on Saturday in a tri-match with Sacred Heart.