Elida volleyball squad gets good start on loaded week

By Kevin Wilson

DORA — It was an easy enough night for the Elida volleyball team, even when its coach was scoring a point for Dora.
The visiting Lady Tigers got a good start on a loaded week, sweeping Dora in three games Monday night at Guy Luscombe Gymnasium. Elida (8-3, 3-0 District 3-1A) has matches tonight against Vaughn and Thursday against Fort Sumner.
All things considered, Elida coach Darrell Chenault was happy to get out with a win as quickly as possible.
“We played them to five games here last year,” Chenault said. “I told the girls, ‘I don’t care what the score is. We win in three, we’re happy campers.’”
The Lady Tigers did just that, jumping out to sizable leads in the first and third game and surviving a late Dora rally in the second stanza.
Elida led the Lady Coyotes 23-15 in the second game, but were helpless as Ashley Carter served Dora through a 7-0 run. The final point of the run came from Chenault, when he called a timeout that his team didn’t have.
Chenault was assessed a delay of game penalty, pushing the score to 23-22.
“It’s my job to keep up with that and I nearly cost us a game,” Chenault admitted afterward.
The Lady Tigers made the point irrelevant after a tip kill from Keisha Chenault and a hitting error from the Lady Coyotes ended it.
Elida never trailed in the third game, building a 17-10 lead on a kill from Adrienne Coe. Dora rallied late, but never got closer than 21-17. A Dora service error gave Elida a side out and a point, and the Lady Tigers had more than enough left to close out the match.
“Our serve-receive wasn’t too good,” Dora coach Myra Skinner said. “We still have a lot of room for improvement on our serving.”
Skinner admitted that her team had a tough time getting into a rhythm after playing without two starters at the Lady Buff Invitational in Melrose over the weekend. She thought her team would be better prepared for tonight, when it hosts Floyd.
A lack of rhythm was a problem Chenault could understand, but for different reasons.
“We’re not sharp because we haven’t practiced, we haven’t played,” Chenault said. “We were in the gym only twice (for practice) last week. Two practices in nine days, and it showed.”