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MTZ volleyball goes 5-3 last week

Jocelyn Turner and Maddie Kendall go up for the block in a 2-1 loss to Effingham at home in Mt. Zion.

By BLAKE FAITH
Staff Writer

The Mt. Zion volleyball team 5-3 last week.

Against Effingham, the Braves lost the first set 25-16. The Braves started off the second set strong with a 5-1 lead that ended with a Maddie Kendall kill.

Later into the second set, the Braves started to come back and tied the set at 10-10. Ella Fink made a kill, Kendall got a kill, a failed return from the Hearts and Kendall Smith made a block to give the Braves a 14-10 lead.

The set was tied once again 15-15 and Jocelyn Turner asserted her presence at the net. Tuner started with a kill and then rattled off two straight blocks that gave the Braves an 18-15 lead.

“It’s incredible that she’s a varsity starter,” Head coach Traci Dyer said. “She hasn’t played for three years, but her block is elemental to our success. We need to get her a little bit more aggressive, but I feel like I’m still teaching her things like that freshmen are learning, so she’s getting there. We just need to get her body moving a little faster and to the speed of the game. But we need her block so much, we depend on it a lot for our defense.”

The set once again was tied at 22-22. The Braves took the lead when the Hearts failed to return and then tied the set 23-23. Kendall scored on an attack that gave the Braves a 24-23 lead and then the Braves won the set on a failed return.

The Braves ended up losing the third set 25-17.

“I think we just need to continue focusing on consistency and eliminating unforced errors,” Coach Dyer-Townsend said. “We dig ourselves into a hole and then we are good at battling back, but we let them get too many points and that killed us tonight.”

The Braves improved to 13-9 overall and 3-4 in Apollo Conference play. This week the Braves will face Mahomet-Seymour and Mattoon.

“In the locker room we talked about it’s October, which is go time,” Coach Dyer-Townsend said. “It’s time to do your job or we find someone else to do your job. So, I think just really honing in on consistency and playing with heart every single play.”

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