Lady Dawgs move to 6-4 with home wins over Georgetown Eastview, Lorena
By TJ MAXWELL
The Copperas Cove Lady Dawgs have notched six wins in as many days to improve to 6-4 to, open the 2019 season, including consecutive home games against Georgetown East View on Monday and Lorena on Tuesday.
After tasting back-to-back losses for the first time since the Volleypalooza tournament in August of 2017, the Lady Dawgs got back to their winning ways with a 25-16, 29-27, 25-19 win over East View on Monday followed by a 25-18, 25-9, 25-16 win over Lorena on Tuesday.
Against East View, kills by seniors Sam Ingram, Leah Powell and Jaela Rice helped the Lady Dawgs build an early lead they never relinquished.
In the second set, an ace by Ingram opened up a 17-10 lead. East View battled back but Cove was able to hang on for a 29-27 win.
With East View leading 9-7 in the third and final set, a block and an ace by Rice helped the Lady Dawgs take a 13-11 lead and a kill by Powell increased the lead to four on their way to the 25-19 third-set win.
Rice led the Lady Dawgs in kills with 10 followed by Powell (9) and senior Janice Fa’aola (8). Junior Emily Vanderpoel led in assists with 20 followed by Ingram with 12. Powell led the back-row defense with 18 digs while Fa’aola chipped in 13, Vanderpoel had 12 and Ingram finished with 10. Powell also led in blocks with three.
The Lady Dawgs returned to Bulldawg Gymnasium on Tuesday where they the Lorena Lady Leopards in a three-set sweep.
The Lady Leopards kept the first set close with several ties despite an ace each from Vanderpoel and Rice, along with a kill by Fa’aola and Powell.
The kill by Powell broke an 11-11 tie and the Lady Dawgs kept pulling away before another Powell kill closed the set 25-18.
The Lady Dawgs ran away with set two 25-9.
A block by Jaela Rice and a kill by junior Larissa Melendez got the Lady Dawgs started before blocks by Ingram and Fa’aola along with a kill by Fa’aola helped open a 10-point Cove lead, 16-6.
Three more Fa’aola kills pushed the lead to 19-6 before Lorena’s Blaze Runyan temporarily halted the Lady Dawgs’ run.
A kill by sophomore Kyra Gaston helped close out the set 25-9.
The Lady Dawgs again jumped out to a fast start in the final set with kills by Powell and a dump by ingram.
A block by Gaston followed by consecutive kills by Fa’aola pushed Cove’s lead to 10, 13-3.
A kill by Cove’s Fa’aola gave Cove their largest lead of the set, 18-6, before an ace by Ava Sanders, a dump by Damiana Longo and consecutive kills by Abbie Tuyo cut the Cove lead to eight, 19-11.
Kills by Gaston and Fa’aola pushed the lead back to 10, 22-12.
A point by Lorena’s Leigh Jesperson and a Cove hitting error kept the set alive at 24-16 but a kill by Fa’aola closed out the set and the match.
Fa’aola had a match-high 18 kills while Powell added nine and Gaston added four. Powell again led the back-row defense with 16 digs followed by Rice (12), Fa’aola (8), Ingram (7) and sophomore Emma Wasiak (7). Gaston had three blocks to lead the category with ingram chipping in two.
The Lady Dawgs improve to 6-4 with the win. They compete in the Allen Texas Open hosted by Allen High School.
The Lady Dawgs play in the Division II bracket with hosts Allen, Frisco Heritage and Hockaday.
Cove opens tournament action today at 10:15 a.m. against Frisco Heritage before facing Hockaday in a 12:45 p.m. match and closing out day one action against hosts Allen at 2 p.m.
To follow the action live, visit www.alleneaglesvolleyball.com/texasopen and click on Tournament Day Live Results graphic.
The Lady Dawgs then travel to Dripping Springs on Tuesday before heading to Whitney for the Whitney Invitational set for August 23-24.