ALHS spikers swept at Owatonna

Published 12:00 am Friday, September 6, 2002

OWATONNA &045; Coach Gina Eppen has seen a couple of trends with the 2002 edition of the Albert Lea High School volleyball team.

One bothers her a little.

&uot;It seems like our kids like to get behind before they’re ready to play,&uot; said Eppen. &uot;That’s something we’d like to change. We need to go out and get ahead early.&uot;

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The other trend? The Tigers’ never-say-die attitude.

&uot;To this team’s credit, they do battle back,&uot; said Eppen.

But the Tigers fell to far behind too early and lost their Big Nine opener 3-0 at Owatonna Thursday night. The game scores were 15-7, 15-4, 15-13.

&uot;Again, we gave up some big early leads and really had to battle to get back in it,&uot; said Eppen.

The Tigers served 89 percent, 39-for-44, with one ace.

Eppen also heard some complimentary words from the Owatonna coach for the second year in a row.

&uot;He said we’re making progress, we played well defensively, especially in the third game,&uot; said Eppen. &uot;Even though we had two losses this week, we played better volleyball than we did a week ago. We’re playing better volleyball. The girls just need more confidence.&uot;

The Tigers’ leaders Thursday: Whitney Sorenson 11 kills, four digs, two blocks; Ashley Chrz two kills, eight assists, three digs, two blocks, 7-for-7 serve receive; Leah Boyer six assists, three digs, four blocks; Jenny Hovendick 11 digs; Amber Edwards two kills, three blocks; Danielle Rankin two kills, eight digs, one block.

The Tigers fell to 1-3 overall. Owatonna improved to 2-0 in the Big Nine.

The Tigers host Winona in a Big Nine match Monday.