OHS program shows progress with another win over DC

Aug. 26—Owensboro High School had a long victory drought in volleyball against Daviess County heading into the 2022 season. DC had won every match against OHS going back through the 2015 season.

The Lady Devils broke through on Sept. 22, 2022 with a tough 3-2 win over Daviess County in their second regular season match (12-25, 25-23, 9-25, 25-22, 15-11). DC ended Owensboro's season on Oct. 17 in the opening round of the 9th District Tournament, winning 3-0 (25-17, 25-22, 25-21).

OHS and DC saw each other again Thursday night, and the Lady Devils put together an impressive 3-0 sweep of their own at the DC gym (25-22, 25-16, 25-10).

That it was Owensboro's second win over DC in their last three matches is noteworthy. It means progress for the OHS volleyball program, and it showed resiliency after having a tough weekend in the Apollo Summer Slam.

OHS went 2-4 in the Summer Slam, beating Harrison High School (Evansville) and Crittenden County. OHS is 4-5 overall now.

"In tournaments it's hard to move on (mentally) because you're playing so many games, so many points," OHS' Addie Travis said of Summer Slam. "We stayed in our heads a lot. Tonight we just kept moving forward. After tonight I'm excited for the rest of the season."

Travis was talking after the OHS win at Daviess County. The Lady Devils will be off until Tuesday when they travel to Apollo for another 9th District matchup.

"Our mental game, we've been doing little things in practice to really focus on the mental aspect of it," OHS coach Melissa Hibbs said of where the team is trying to improve. "The second thing was serving. Last weekend we did not serve aggressive. We've done a lot of serving throughout practice. (Thursday) that was a huge difference for us."

Senior Kiersten Taylor and junior Rose Larsen each had five service aces against Daviess County.

"Personally my serve was my best thing," Taylor said about her contributions Thursday. "We were able to switch to the 'next ball' mentality instead of focusing on the last ball, we were able to get to the next point."

Before the DC game, Travis led the team with 78 kills. Anna Travis had 15 service aces. Ava Fincher led OHS with 146 assists.

Staying positive and dialed in throughout the DC game was big for OHS.

"There were ups and downs throughout, but overall we put together a really good game," said Travis, another junior. "I thought we did really well at staying consistent. When we kept getting good passes, kept our serves going over, kept hitting it in, we focused on one thing at a time."

Taylor thought the DC win was a chance for team growth that OHS wants to keep going.

"We've really developed as a team this past summer," Taylor said. We've been pushing to build that bond, and I feel like that bond has allowed us to trust each other. I feel like we'll have a good season moving forward."