Lafayette Volleyball Cruises Against Heritage in Season Opener

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Kelly Carroll
Kelly Carroll logs a dig in the first game against Heritage. (Ty Hodges/WYDaily)

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Lafayette started its 2015 volleyball campaign with an easy home sweep against Conference 18 opponent Heritage on Tuesday night.

The Rams cruised to a 25-8, 25-13, 25-19 victory behind strong play from first-team All-State player Abby Oren, who recorded 11 kills, 2 aces and 10 digs in the win.

Lafayette jumped on Heritage in the first game, taking a 9-1 lead and forcing a quick Hurricanes (0-1) timeout, which proved ineffective as Lafayette kept extending its lead until the first game ended 25-8.

Game two was more of the same as Lafayette controlled the tempo of play and took advantage of numerous errors on the part of Heritage.

Despite cruising to a 25-13 second game win, the Rams were not without their share of errors.

Service errors, communication issues and missing open shots on the court allowed Heritage to get more competitive as the match went along.

"We have a lot to work on and improve on," said senior setter Julia Howard after the match. "We hope to improve on communication and court awareness of where we are in relation to each other."

The third game seemed like a potential changing of the tides as Heritage jumped out to a quick 5-0 lead thanks to poor defense from the Rams.

Instead of calling a timeout, Lafayette Head Coach Keith Nowadly let his girls weather the storm and play through some adversity early on.

The plan worked as Lafayette took nine of the next 12 points to take a 9-8 lead in the game. The Rams never looked back, holding off the Hurricanes 25-19 in the match-clinching game while rotating in bench players to get them playing time.

"When we had our starters in we were OK," Nowadly said. "We've got to start recognizing the court better. There were times when their defense had three people standing next to each other and we've got to see the open court and score."

In spite of their perceived struggles, the Rams still leave their first game with a 1-0 record and a victory over a Conference 18 foe.

Lafayette will continue its season on the road Sept. 1 against defending Group 3A state champions Warhill.

Lafayette def. Heritage 25-8, 25-13, 25-19

Lafayette: Abby Oren (11 kills, 2 aces, 10 digs), Julia Howard (2 kills, 7 aces, 10 digs, 15 assists), Abby Goetsch (4 aces, 6 assists)