Seahawks sweep Pam Pack|Win season opener

Published 11:46 am Friday, August 20, 2010

By By BRIAN HAINES, Sports Writer
CHOCOWINITY — The Seahawks opened the 2010 volleyball season on the right foot as they were able to top Washington 25-22, 27-25, 25-8 on Thursday.
Southside coach Elizabeth Pruden enters the season having to replace five starters from a successful 2009 team, but her players did a good job of battling opened day jitters.
“We have had scrimmages where we looked a lot better, but today I think we were more nervous than anything,” Pruden said. “It took till about the third game for us to get the jitters out and start playing the way we can.”
Southside held steady up front as they were led by Atyana Starkie, Renikia Hodges and Corey Watford at the net, while back players Macy Paramore, Katie Jones and Sondra Sparks turned in solid overall performances.
“My setter Katie Jones has really stepped up along with Sondra Sparks, who can do a lot of things for us,” Pruden said. “I don’t have a lot of girls on this team so everybody is going to be asked to do, and know, a lot.”
Washington (0-2) enters the this season desperately trying to get a win after ending the 2009 campaign without a victory. The 3-A Pam Pack opened up the season on Monday with a loss against 1-A Riverside and followed that up with Thursday’s loss to 1-A Southside.
Washington’s third-year coach Tara Hunter said that she and the team are not feeling the pressure from last year’s woes.
“I think that each year is a new year,” Hunter said. “It’s a chance to start over and begin again. I came in with a very little volleyball program and each year we have expanded in our numbers. I only had 19 girls last year and this year I’m up to 26. It’s a growing program and that’s what I look at. When you grow you have to start somewhere and those first two years where huge growing years for us. This year the sky is the limit.”
While the number of athletes in the program are growing, it’s the number of wins that needs to get larger. On Thursday, Hunter’s crew took a step towards that as the team showed fire and intensity that was at times missing last season. The Pack players dove on the floor for balls, congratulated each other for points and played hard for the better part of three matches.
The Pack hung within three points of Southside for the entire first match, and held a 19-17 lead in the second match before falling 27-25. In the third match the fire blew out for Washington as it allowed Southside to go on a 14-2 run en route to a 25-8 victory.
Washington got strong play at the net from Haley Hiatt and Robin Lilley, while Sarah Nichols and Michelle Hodges each contributed solid serves.
Washington will be back in action on Tuesday at home, while the Seahawks will be at Pamlico on Monday.