Fri. Jul 19th, 2024

Goldsboro takes down Southern Wayne in four sets

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GOLDSBORO — Goldsboro varsity girls volleyball team started off its season with a 3-1 victory over Southern Wayne on Thursday.

The Cougars won the last three sets 26-24, 25-18, 25-21. The Saints took set one 25-21. Goldsboro head coach TJ Lancaster was happy with his young team’s effort.

“Really none of them have played together,” Lancaster said. “Early on, we were out of sorts a little bit but we started to feel ourselves. I saw us start to gel and come together.”

Goldsboro went 16-7 last year, which was good for fourth in the 2-A East Central and set the table for a third-round playoff exit. The Cougars had five seniors graduate and now have a team with only two. Lancaster is optimistic about his team’s chances if they can play defense well.

“We have all the offense we need, we got some great young hitters,” Lancaster explained. “Our serve receive and our defense, if those things will come and get better then we’re hitting on all cylinders at the end — that’s what we want. If we can just build that defense, it will compliment everything else we do.”

Southern Wayne went 6-15 last season and finished sixth in the 3-A / 4-A Eastern Carolina Conference, but with Southern Wayne alumni Scarlett Joyner now at the helm, the Saints are hopeful they can turn it around. 

Joyner graduated in 2005 and she says she’s excited to take over coaching at her alma mater. SW hasn’t had a winning season in volleyball in at least ten years.

“It feels like I’m giving back to the school,” Joyner said. “I’m coming back to the community I grew up in and contributing as much as I can. I saw a lot of good tonight, and a lot of progress from last year.”

Joyner said she’s really preached the importance of ball control. She said she was pleased with the passing against Goldsboro. 

“In summer workouts I told them, the reason we’re not winning is because of our ball control,” Joyner said. “We had a lot of served that were deep and out, and that’s free points because you didn’t have ball control. We worked so much on passing because that’s what we struggled with last year, and I was so proud of them tonight because they got some digs on some really hard hit balls.”

Sophomore Hailey Brown had the most kills for the Cougars with 12. Junior Anna Miranda led the way for Goldsboro with six aces. Senior Garyn Taylor had 20 digs to lead the Cougars. 16 assists by sophomore Elizabeth Howell was good for the team lead as well.

The Saints will be back in action against North Lenoir on Tuesday. The Cougars will play Ayden-Grifton at Lenoir Community College on Saturday.

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August 2019