Hoping to exact revenge from a loss at Providence on Saturday, the Columbus East volleyball team was unable to muster up consistent play Thursday night, falling to the Class 3A No. 1 Pioneers 25-17, 25-20, 25-22.
Losing convincingly in the first set, the 4A No. 6 Olympians began the second set with much more energy taking a quick 4-0 lead. However, Providence fought back with five straight points.
“We flipped our rotations around this time to try and get some better matchups,” East coach Stacie Pagnard said. “But when you’re playing a team like Providence, there really is no weak spots. The difficult thing is that we have to play more consistent, and we weren’t tonight. I think that was the more frustrating thing versus the changes that we made.”
After losing the second set, the Olympians (10-3) again started off strong in the third set, holding a 9-8 lead. A few miscues by East allowed the Pioneers to regain the lead, extending it to 18-12.
Senior Cortney VanLiew scored one of her eight kills on, which began a run for the Olympians that cut the lead at 19-18, forcing Providence to take a timeout. Following the timeout, the Pioneers came out hot and would go on to finish off East in the set and match.
“We put some younger kids out there, and I thought they played really well in a big-time environment, so I was happy with that,” Pagnard said. “But we really need to hone in on our serving to focus on how we can put pressure on people from every angle and not just from attacking.”
Alaysha Pollert led the Olympians with 16 digs, while Kendal Williams finished with 30 assists. VanLiew contributed an ace, and Bailey Western led the way with 13 kills.