GRAND COTEAU — An overpowering Academy of The Sacred Heart of Grand Coteau attack was too much for Southern Lab in a Division V regional-round volleyball playoff contest played Monday night at SHGC.
The Saints’ attackers hammered their way to the state volleyball turnament for a second straight year, registering 35 kills in a 3-0 victory. SHGC won by scores of 25-18, 25-7, 25-19.
ASH played at a speed that was difficult to match, said Southern Lab volleyball coach Alicia Hale, whose team made the playoffs for the first time since 1999.
“I thought we had trouble adjusting to the speed of the game they play. Instead of playing our game I thought we played the way they were playing,” Hale said.
Southern Lab ended the season 19-9.
Third-seeded ASH (28-10) meets No. 6 Dunham in a quarterfinal set for 10:50 a.m. Thursday at Kenner’s Pontchartrain Center.
ASH volleyball coach Megan McCown said her team played with the goal of again reaching the state tourney.
“The girls were excited. We hadn’t played in about a week and I thought we came out hungry and determined. We came out and attacked,” McCown said.
The Saints never trailed whilw winning the first set 25-18. In the second set Southern Lab scored three straight to even it at four. Then behind the serving of Kathleen Boulet, Sacred Heart won seven straight to lead 11-4.
Middle hitter Jennifer Link killed a shot at the net to help the Saints to a 17-7 advantage.
The Kittens then failed to break the Saints’ Hailey Gauther, who served the last eight points.
Southern Lab kept it closer in the final set. The Kittens never led, but an ASH hitting error allowed the Kittens to pull within 11-10.
Erin Mockler served ASH to a 17-11 lead after that, but a couple of kills and a block from Lab’s Autumn Moore made it 23-19.
Moore and Destinie Taylor were the servers during the run of seven straight Kittens’ points.
Southern Lab was plagued by hitting and service errors in the final two sets.
The Kittens had six serving errors each in the second and third sets. Hale said she wasn’t surprised by that statistic.
“Our serving is something that we have struggled with the whole season,” she said.