After back-to-back 3-0 wins against Manassas Park and Rappahannock County high schools last week, the George Mason High School girls varsity volleyball team had a tougher fight against Clarke County High School Tuesday night. Still, the girls added to the win column with a 3-2 game against Clarke, bringing them to 10-4 overall, third in the Bull Run District with a 5-2 record.
Again the team was afflicted by veteran players sitting out the game (this time senior captain and middle hitter Natalie Farrell, due to a sprained knee). But senior captain Rachel Bell played the position and not her usual role as outside hitter, leading the team to victory against Clarke County with her seven kills.
“Although our team made far too many serving errors, which led to the close games, we kept playing aggressive, smart volleyball and came away with the win,” said Coach Erik Healey.
Healey attributes the recent Manassas win to serving, including the efforts of junior Jade Taylor, who in the first game took the team from a 13-3 deficit to a 22-13 lead with 19 straight points and 11 aces.
“It is always nice to win 3-0, which is our goal every time we take the court,” Healey said. “It means our offense is running efficiently, our defense is tough, we are communicating well and playing smart as a team.”
At this point in the season, the Mustangs have already played all their competitors in the district once, and will be facing them in what Healey considers crucial games.
“Now both sides know what to expect,” Healey said. “As a team we will go back and look at our game footage and find the areas of weakness in our opponents. We have the ability to tailor our game to our opponent and take advantage of the mismatches we have against their team.”
The team plays at William Monroe High School Oct. 6 and at home against Central High School Oct. 11. Both games start at 7 p.m.