'Much improved' EA squad dropped

Published 8:34 am Monday, August 27, 2007

By By Matthew Nascone
The Escambia Academy volleyball team showed how far it has come in a year's time during the opening match of the 2007 season. The Lady Cougars won the first set of their match against Fort Dale Academy Thursday. They did not grab a set win for nearly half the season last year.
"Overall, this team has improved tremendously from where we were last year," EA head coach Keri Payne said. "We had a lot of bump, set and spike in this match and we just didn't have a lot of that last year."
But, as with any young program, the old habits will come back.
"We had times out there when the old Cougars came out," Payne said. "They were not talking to each other and playing as a team, but overall I was pleased with how they played."
The Fort Dale Lady Eagles won the match 3-1 (20-25, 25-17, 25-21, 26-24). Payne said she was also proud of how her team fought back when they got down. The Lady Cougars were down two sets to one and 7-2 in the fourth set, but they almost pushed the match to a decisive fifth set.
Behind the serves of sophomore Jordan Jaye, junior Lauren Wilson and freshmen Taylor Helton and Amber Huskey the Lady Cougars stormed back to tie the fourth set at 20-20. They pushed the set to extra points, but lost the set and the match.
Huskey had four aces for the match, Jaye had three and Wilson, Helton and senior Talerie Singleton had two apiece.
Payne said this new attitude is something the squad needs to implement the entire match.
"When they are working as a team and talking to each other, they are great," she said. "But they just don't do that all the time yet, but I am expecting great things out of them this year."
Jaye led the team with five kills. Huskey added four kills, senior Clare Jones contributed two kills and Wilson had one kill. Jones also had five assists.

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