Lady Dragons Win Home-Opener Over Oliver Springs

Story and Photos by Rusty Ellis

The York Institute Lady Dragons hosted their first volleyball match in nearly 40 years, defeating Oliver Springs 3-0 on Monday night.

The Lady Bobcats took an early 4-0 lead in the opening set, but York roared back to take control and win the first set 25-13.

That was the only slow start York experienced, as they opened the second frame with nine straight points before Oliver Springs got a chance to serve. This allowed the Lady Dragons to roll to a 2-0 lead with a 25-12 win in the set.

The final set ended even faster than the first two, as York moved their record to 5-1 on the season with a 3-0 win after winning the third set 25-9.

“We started off really slow, we just had to reel our emotions in,” said York head coach Michael Green. “After we got calmed down, we played like we had the last couple of games…I’m really proud of the effort from my girls. They’re figuring it out more and more with each game.”

Before the season, Green said many times that he would’ve been happy with one win, considering that the team had little experience with the game of volleyball. Now sitting at 5-1 and tied for second in the district, Green attributes a lot of that success to how newcomers Emerson Maier and Cali Franklin have stepped up as leaders.

“Most of them are playing for the first time ever, and Emerson and Cali are helping with that,” Green said. “The girls are listening to them, and they’re making sure everyone is where they need to be…they’re enjoying playing together and they’ve all got great attitudes.”

With almost 40 years going by between home matches for York, Green was hoping there would be a bigger crowd to support his team. When his team came out for warm-ups, he saw that he got his wish.

“The pep club was amazing,” Green said. “There’s a lot of things going on, and to have that kind of crowd at a volleyball game is amazing. So many games I see, there’s no one in the stands, so the atmosphere was awesome…if you had told me we’d win five games this early, I’d be thrilled. The more and more people see these girls play, they’re going to want to show up more.”

York will hit the road on Tuesday to take on Harriman, the team they’re tied with in the district standings.