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Friday, June 14, 2024

Netters riding eight-match win streak heading into final pre-district bout

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Following a rough weekend Sept. 15-16 at the Zia Classic in Roswell, the Bulldog volleyball team has been on a roll.

They returned home to Bulldog Pit Sept. 19 for the first time since the end of August and picked up a four-game win over Class 5A Hobbs before completing an Eddy County War sweep of Carlsbad Sept. 26. The ‘Dogs then made their next — and final — regular-season tournament outing count, besting fellow 4A opponents Los Alamos and Goddard at the Rio Rancho Volleybash, 3-1 and 3-0, respectively.

Two more victories over 5A competition followed, 3-1 and 3-0 over Roswell High and Clovis, and the girls in orange made quick work of Ruidoso Tuesday on the road, 3-0, before turning in another 3-1 win over Hobbs Thursday on the road.

That match saw Artesia notch a 25-18 win in Game One before coming up just short of the Eagles in the second set, 23-25. They came back to dominate Game Three, however, 25-12, before closing out the victory with a 25-18 final in Game Four.

Hattie Harrison and McKenna Morrison led the squad in kills on the night with 15 and 12, respectively. Kailyn Owens served up a trio of aces and Morrison and Carmen Harvey two apiece, while Harvey and Morrison contributed 18 and 17 digs and setter Kymber Beltran 36 assists.

The Bulldogs will be looking to close out their regular season with another win at 6 p.m. Thursday in Alamogordo as they take on the 3-11 Tigers. Artesia defeated Alamo 3-0 in the teams’ first meeting Aug. 31 at the Pit.

But while head coach Alan Williams and his staff are pleased with the ‘Dogs’ recent string of wins, the team is still having issues here and there with two aspects of its game Williams knows will need to tighten up prior to the start of District play next week.

“It’s hard to complain when you’re winning, but there are definitely things we’ve got to do better in order to be the best team we can be,” the coach said Saturday. “We’re a little inconsistent when it comes to serving and passing, and those are the two most important parts of the game.

“So that’s something we’re striving to get better with. We have really good hitters and a good setter, but you can’t win without setting and passing, and that comes down to fundamentals. We’ve also had some sickness and some injuries lately. Luckily, we have a day off Tuesday, so we should be healthy and ready to go by district.”

Brienne Green
Daily Press Editor

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