In its first match of the 2015 volleyball season, Brownstown Central had one goal: set the tone of the season with a win.
The Braves opened with a 25-17, 25-10, 25-18 home win against Eastern (Pekin) on Tuesday.
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“It’s huge; to be 1-0 right now just builds confidence and sets the tone,” Braves coach Jennifer Shade said. “If we had come in with a loss, we might feel like we needed to start all over. From here it’s a building point and can only get better.”
In the first game, the Braves went back and forth with the Musketeers until building a five-point advantage at 20-15.
A kill from senior Laura Pence finished the game and gave the Braves the 25-17 win.
Following a three-minute break, the Braves came out with more energy in the second game.
The Braves built a 5-0 lead behind serves from senior Danielle Meyer before extending the deficit to 12-1 on seven-straight winning points.
At 18-5 the Braves built their largest lead of the night as they cruised to a 25-10 win.
“I think everyone, at this time of year, is going to be a little rusty,” Shade said.
“We weren’t even sure how to sub-in at points, and we have some girls who aren’t used to playing in front of a crowd. Sometimes you’re going to be a little hesitant and not on your game at first. After that first game, we settled down and starting connecting better with our hitters.”
With two games behind them, the Braves battled at the start of game three as the score read 12-12.
Following a timeout by Shade, the Braves distanced themselves by winning four straight points before coming away with their first win of the season.
Meyer led the Braves’ hitting unit, making 22 of 28 attempts with 15 kills, while Emily Brock went 10 of 11 with four aces to lead in serving.
While there are still kinks to be fixed, Shade said she was pleased with her team’s effort in the match.
“I would say we’re confident in our serve-receive and our passing,” Shade said.
“We just need to work with our hitters on being a little more aggressive and need to find ways to score more points.”
On Thursday, the Braves will travel to Bloomington North.