Greenwood Volleyball Continues to Build off Last Season’s Success
The Greenwood volleyball team had a remarkable season last year, winning the Region Four title on the way to a 32-9 finish overall.
The Lady Gators have sustained the success so far this season, sitting firmly atop the region with a record of 12-1 as they head into the home stretch of the season.
We’re going to get every teams best game because we âre the defending champion, but for us it’s just about going out and matching that intensity in every single match, said Greenwood coach Jason Reels. We changed our motto from last year to this year. Last year it was â Play for the girl next to you and this year it’s How badly do you want it? I think (the players) adopted that and they set their own mottos for the season. I think that truly sees where were at.
The mindset is very similar for Reels players. Many say last season’s success serves as a confidence booster for this year, but they are still very aware of the stifling competition in the region.
It puts us in a good position to be confident but still wary of the other teams, said senior Rileigh Stivers. You never go in thinking you’re going to win, but it helps knowing that you have had success in the past.
(Last year) was a turning point. It has taken us back to where we used to be and as a program, —just to know we can get (to state) again—serves as a confidence booster.
The Lady Gators are undefeated in region and district play as of now, and the majority of Greenwoods matches occurred at the Bluegrass Invitational Volleyball Tournament, which was held at Lafayette High School in Lexington on Aug. 25 and 26.
We’ve gone to Bluegrass Invitational Tournament which was a great challenge for us, playing some teams from Louisville and Lexington, said Reels. We did very well, finished third overall, and I was pretty impressed with the way we performed.
But Coach Reels realizes that it doesn’t stop with the Bluegrass Invitational Volleyball Tournament. The Lady Gators are competing in a district that is teeming with other talented teams, such as Bowling Green and South Warren.
You come back (from Lexington) and you’re in the dog fight of district and region and everybody is going to give you their best game, said Reels. But overall I have been pleased with how the girls have handled the pressure.
According to senior Alexa Davis, the Lady Gators have been able to handle the pressure by simply sticking together and getting along with each other.
“We have a lot of really good team chemistry, said Davis. All of us flow well and nobody gets frustrated when somebody messes up. We all come together, figure out the problem, and we put people where they need to be. We all just encourage each other and create a really good bond.
According to Reels, friendly competition at practice is another thing that has attributed to the Lady Gators success.
“It starts in practice. Every day in practice we have very intense practices and we match up very well against each other. Everyone is in there pushing for playing time, and I really think that’s what has pushed us to be better. What you do in practice sets the tone for how you’re going to perform in those Region Four matches”.
Greenwood will look to continue to do these things and have success as the second half of the season rolls on. The rest of the Lady Gators schedule consists of six region games, with four of those being District 14 games against Warren East, Bowling Green, South Warren, and Warren Central.
The Lady Gators will travel to participate in the First Priority Lady Colonel Volleyball Classic at Whitley County on Sep. 22, and Greenwood will finish the regular season with back-to-back road games at powerhouses Central Hardin and Henderson County.