Wednesday, October 5, 2011
DALLAS -- Teams are beginning to figure out you just can't walk all over the Dallas volleyball team anymore.
South Albany and Silverton recently learned their lessons. The two teams defeated the Lady Dragons in the end, but they had to go through grueling, five-game matches to do it.
"It was two tough losses," Dallas coach Cathy McCarron said with a sigh. "But again, in my book, the girls are being very competitive against established teams. We're a program that's growing and just playing some good volleyball. It's fun to watch."
Dallas fell 25-13, 25-17, 25-27, 17-25, 15-10 Sept. 27 at South Albany. The Lady Dragons lost 25-23, 9-25, 25-22, 15-25, 16-14 Sept. 29 at home against Silverton.
Dallas struggled to get going early against the Lady Rebels, rallied to win games three and four and then quickly fell behind 5-0 in the decisive fifth game.
Caitlyn McCarron led the Lady Dragons with 13 kills and eight blocks. Deaven Vessell added eight kills and four service aces. Dani Ackerman and Shaymarie Parker combined for 28 assists.
"We had a very slow start," Cathy McCarron said. "We came back in games three and four and played our game. They got their energy. They started passing the way they're supposed to. Their serving was good. They woke up.
"The fifth game was a tight one. Again, our passing failed us. We came out of the gate slow and weren't able to recover fast enough. But, overall, the girls played some great volleyball."
The Silverton match also went back-and-forth and came down to a decisive fifth game. Again, Dallas started slowly in game five, falling behind 7-1 and later 12-3. The Lady Dragons whipped the home crowd into a fever pitch by rallying to tie the score at 14-14. Silverton, though, scored the next two points, ending the contest.
"The great thing about these girls is they don't give up," McCarron said. "They're fighters. They play with heart. Things were not looking good, but the girls did not hang their heads. We came back and tied it, but the ball didn't go our way."
Vessell compiled 17 kills and four aces against the Silver Foxes. Ackerman handed out 22 assists. Kiley Barcroft and Kelsey Linn had 11 digs apiece, and Amanda Dankenbring served four aces.
Dallas begins the second half of Mid-Willamette Conference play this week and will host West Albany Thursday, Oct. 6.
"They're human, and they can be beat," McCarron said. "But we'll have to come out of the gate fast and play our "A" game the whole time."