West Shamokin volleyball coach seeks more consistency
By Matt Grubba
Published: Thursday, Sept. 19, 2013, 11:21 p.m.
West Shamokin's girls volleyball team is where it wants to be — and not where it wants to be — at the same time.
The Wolves solidified their hold on second place in Section 1-A with a 3-0 win over visiting Riverview on Thursday, but even in a win, West Shamokin coach Dan Spencer believes his team is capable of a higher level of play as the season's midpoint approaches.
West Shamokin (4-1, 4-1) won the match with set scores of 25-14, 25-19 and 25-18, but the Wolves had moments that they weren't entirely in control against the struggling Raiders (1-6, 1-4).
“We're not where we need to be,” Spencer said. “I thought we'd be further along at this point, but we're just not executing consistently.
“We look good for two plays, but then we look bad for two. When you get to midseason, you'd at least like to be consistent. If you're a bad team, every play should be bad, and if you're a good team, a lot more should be good. We're not where a good team should be.”
The Wolves have a strong core of seven seniors, many of whom have a year or more of starting experience on varsity.
Outside hitter Amanda Wensel and middle hitter Alecia Calhoun, who led the team with 12 and 10 kills, respectively, are a formidable pair at the net. Libero Kristen Templeton and outside hitter Kelly Clowser also play major roles as senior starters.
The team has no juniors, but a group of sophomores, including setter SierraDailey, has played a part in getting the team to second place behind unbeaten Greensburg Central Catholic. Another sophomore in West Shamokin's deep rotation, Alyssa Peters, contributed five aces against Riverview.
“It's not that we don't have potential, I just thought we'd be closer to realizing it now,” Spencer said. “Our girls are capable of being a very good team.”
But while Spencer believes his team is capable of better play, the positive for the Wolves is that they haven't taken a bad loss in section play. With just one loss, West Shamokin still controls its path to at least sharing the section title.
That path would require a win on the road Thursday in the team's rematch with Greensburg C.C., but Spencer is less concerned with that result than seeing his team get into a better rhythm.
“We still have a lot of weeks left before we're in a playoff situation, but we certainly need to cut down on all the unforced errors,” Spencer said.
“We're in second place, and it's going to be tough to beat GCC, even if we get all our ducks in a row. But I'd like to be able to come out and play well against them next week.”
Matt Grubba is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or via Twitter @Grubba_Trib.
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