Blue Jays fight off Wolves for win No. 8
Four games in four weeks is not enough volleyball in Sara Hegerle's opinion -- but that won't be an issue this weekend.
The Jamestown High School volleyball team was slated for back-to-back matches Friday and Saturday - first making the trip up to Watford City and ending the two-day trip in Williston.
"We have had too much time sitting around in the gym waiting for matches to happen," Hegerle said of the quick turnaround time. "This is better than not having a match."
The Blue Jays got their first win of the weekend Friday night, downing the Wolves in a two-hour, five-set battle. The Jays scored a combined 31 points in the first two sets before rebounding in the third with a 25-17 win.
"They came out just on fire from the very beginning and we came out scared," Hegerle said. "You can count it as travel woes, bus woes or wearing a mask all day -- you can come up with a lot of different excuses as to why we didn't play well, but really it came down to that we didn't execute."
Hegerle said the team had trouble executing a perfect passing average, which led to some missed swings at the net. The Blue Jay back row averaged a 2.34 passing average and was anchored by senior libero Rachel Schiele, who shot 16 up to Katie Trumbauer and the front row.
"We are lucky to have squeaked out a win against that team because they played tough," Hegerle said. "Their record doesn't seem to indicate how competitive they are."
After moving her lineup around to adjust to some unforeseen challenges, Hegerle made the call to put in another defensive specialist in Kaylee Panchot.
It was a good call on the head coach's part.
"We just put Kaylee in left-back and she actually passed and defended well," Hegerle said. "She's one of those players who is pretty consistent and calming. She just kind of calms the team down a little bit and she did a good job of that tonight."
Panchot trailed only Schiele in the total number of digs produced. The senior DS popped up 12 balls and averaged a 2.33 average.
While Panchot was in the No. 5 spot, Hegerle had other spots to fill in right-back and at the service line.
"Jenna Fischer played right-back for us and did a fantastic job, Katie Falk had a serve -- so we had a whole bunch of things happening that we don't normally do," Hegerle said. "Everyone practices serving and passing in our gym so when they're called on to do that in a match like tonight -- they did a good job because they were prepared."
Fischer passed up six to Trumbauer and the front-three. The junior right-side also racked up a team-high of four aces from the service line.
Falk tallied one ace and nine kills, swinging for a 0.278 hitting percentage - the second-highest on the Blue Jay squad. As a team, the Blue Jays averaged a 0.137 hitting percentage across the five-sets.
"We have very few matches this year and very few chances to do something and get better," Hegerle said. "You have to be able to go on the road and beat teams -- whatever their record is you have to take everyone seriously."
With the loss, the Wolves dropped to 1-11 in the WDA standings while the Jays will keep their No. 2 spot improving to 8-2. The Wolves will host Bismarck Legacy (7-4) Saturday at 2:30 p.m.
The Jays' match against the winless Coyotes will also begin at half-past two tomorrow afternoon.
"We won but we would like to clean up our game a little bit and end the weekend on a good note," Hegerle said. "I don't know what Williston will bring, but the Blue Jays have got to bring something different than they did tonight right away."
Jamestown 3, Watford City 2
JHS 16 15 25 26 15
WC 25 25 17 24 8
JHS -- Kills: Hegerle 13, Roaldson 12, Falk 9, Hunter Petersen 6, Haylie Hakanson 4, Trumbauer 1. Assists: Trumbauer 36, Addi Douty 1. Digs: Schiele 16, Panchot 12, Fischer 6, Hegerle 6, Falk 5, Trumbauer 4, Aspyn Peterson 3, Douty 2, Roaldson 1. Aces: Fischer 4, Peterson 3, Falk 1. Blocks: Hegerle 3, Trumbauer 3, Roaldson 2, Hakanson 2, Petersen 1, Falk 1.
WC -- Stats not provided.
Records: Jamestown 8-2, Watford City 1-11