Southside spikers sweep Redskins|Ayers, Hodges come up big for Seahawks

Published 6:39 pm Friday, September 18, 2009

Sports Editor

CHOCOWINITY — With Kristen Ayers seeming to be everywhere on the floor, and Nikki Hodges smashing the ball at will, the Southside Seahawks breezed to a three-game sweep of Roanoke.
The Seahawks (9-4, 4-2) cruised to a 25-7, 25-15, 25-16 win over the Redskins in Thursday’s Four Rivers Conference action.
Southside coach Elizabeth Pruden was pleased to see her team pick it up a notch after three lackluster performances.
“The past three conference games, Manteo, Perquimans and Plymouth, we played horrible,” Pruden said. “It was absolutely the worst I’ve ever seen. I taped the Perquimans game and I showed (my players) how ugly they looked. I gave them a whole list of stats and that really hit home.”
It certainly worked early as the Seahawks raced out to a 10-2 lead in the first game. Courtney Avery served up seven straight points, while Jessica Taylor, Atyana Starkie and Caitlin Bogart all registered kills.
Bogart served up four straight points and Taylor followed with six straight a short time later, while Hodges clubbed six kills, to help Southside build a 23-6 lead, leading to the easy first-game win.
“We came out that first game and played like we had normally been playing,” Pruden said. “That first game is what I’ve been looking for.”
Five consecutive points apiece from Becky Poole and Starkie helped give Southside a 12-5 lead in the second game. Ayers, who had 12 points, 10 assists and six kills in a solid all-around performance, rattled off six consecutive points, which included a pair of aces, for a 22-11 lead. The Seahawks cruised from there.
An Ayers ace got Southside off to another solid start in the third game. Roanoke managed to keep things close, but too many smashes from Hodges helped the Seahawks pull away.
“It felt very good,” Hodges said of her performance, which included 13 kills. “We had pretty sets and pretty bumps. That equaled to good hits.”
Pruden is hoping her Seahawks can keep the momentum going.
“Hopefully, they’ll step it back up,” Pruden said. “I have five seniors and I expect them to step it up.”
The Seahawks travel to Williamston on Tuesday.