NZ takes down Centerville

Posted 10/20/20

The North Zulch volleyball team defeated Centerville in five sets Friday at NZHS to improve their district record to 6-6 entering their final two matchups before beginning the 1A playoffs, in which they will have a bye and advance straight to the Area Round.

This item is available in full to subscribers.

Please log in to continue

E-mail
Password
Log in

NZ takes down Centerville

Posted

The North Zulch volleyball team defeated Centerville in five sets Friday at NZHS to improve their district record to 6-6 entering their final two matchups before beginning the 1A playoffs, in which they will have a bye and advance straight to the Area Round.

The Lady Bulldogs are a 1A team competing in a predominately 2A district, meaning they will qualify for the postseason regardless of their final league standing.

“It was not about preparing to play Centerville, just like it hasn't been about preparing for anyone that we have been playing,” said North Zulch head coach Melissa Padgett. “It is about preparing for the playoffs and where we want to be.

“We are absolutely making strides to get better, to grow and to peak at the right time. That is where our focus is: when are we going to peak, when are we going to be the best team we can be.”

The Lady Bulldogs pulled off the home victory over the Tigers in five sets by scores of 23-25, 25-23, 25-20, 21-25 and 15-12.

“I really would have liked to put them away in four,” said Padgett. “We could have done that, we just didn't execute like we should have. For a long time there were so many big things that were causing us problems. Now, it is a few little things. We are fine-tuning and deciding what we can take to the next level that will make a difference and earn us three or four extra points per match.”

It was the team’s second matchup against Centerville this season. They dropped the Sept. 22 contest on the road in straight sets by scores of 21-25, 22-25 and 20-25.

“I thought Centerville played well against us (in the first matchup),” said Padgett. “They were on a little bit of a high from being 4-0 in district and I didn’t think we showed up at all. I knew we could hang with them. They have a little bit of a different makeup than we do, but our issues kind of balance out with theirs.”

Padgett, who is not one for individual accolades, singled out Madison Murphy for her performance in the win over Centerville Friday.

“(Murphy) had such a great game at the net,” said Padgett. “The last two weeks or so, we focused on some blocking because that has not been our strong point. We really focused on the ins and outs and minor techniques of blocking that a lot of really good teams don’t get around to.”

Murphy recorded seven kills and five blocks in the Friday win.

“That’s five blocks that hit the floor,” said Padgett. “That means five points, but doesn’t include the five or six other blocks she had that were picked up. But they had to pick that ball up out of system and send us back an easy ball that we were able to execute on a few different times.”

Padgett praised Murphy’s resilience in coming back from an ACL tear during basketball season as well as her intelligence on the court, which allowed her to stay in tune with the system during the recovery process.

She also singled out Jordan Barrington and Cheyanne Wallin and noted the team’s improved confidence after the win. In fact, members of the team were confident enough to decorate Padgett’s truck in celebration, a brave action considering their coach’s love for her vehicle.

“They knew that I was happy with them,” said a jovial Padgett. “They wrote on my truck, which is a big no-no. I’m pretty fond of my truck, and I am not real fond of window chalk. They tagged my truck with pink window paint and I wasn't happy about it, but I wasn't mad either. I was happy to see them celebrating.”

On Oct. 13, the Lady Bulldogs defeated Calvert in straight sets for the second time this year. The contest’s final scores were 25-6, 25-10 and 25-4.

The team traveled to Mumford Tuesday and will host Hearne for their senior night matchup at NZHS Friday at 4 p.m.

The majority of the current North Zulch roster will be celebrating their senior nights Friday, including Murphy, Barrington, Wallin, Dannicka Diserens, Tessah Haggard, Trinitty Wallace, Paige McWilliams-Leggett and Katelyn Crocker.

Comments