By Megan Kelley
Lake Orion High School’s varsity volleyball team started off their season this month after an initial season delay.
“We’re off to a bit of a slow start. We played, so far, five teams that are ranked in the top 15 so we’re playing a lot of tough teams early and steadily improving but taking a few bumps so far,” said head coach Tony Scavarda.
The ladies kicked the season off with three big wins over Farmington, Seaholm and Stevenson during a tournament held on Sept. 12. However, the momentum didn’t last long, with the Dragons falling to Skyline High School in a close 3-2 set loss on Sept. 15.
Coming off the close loss, the ladies geared up for their first OAA Red division matchup against their rivals to the north, Oxford High School on Sept. 17.
The game, which took place in the LOHS field house, started off with both teams bringing the heat but eventually ended in a 3-1 loss for the Dragons.
The ladies held on in the first set, falling to Oxford 25-20. The Dragons picked it up in the second set, pulling away early on and finishing the set with a 25-18 win. In the third set, Lake Orion took the lead early on only for Oxford to close the gap and clinch the win by a narrow margin of 24-26. Momentum for the Dragons fell to a game low with a 25-16 loss in the fourth and final set.
“Our biggest weakness this year has been serve receive and passing and that just really reared itself on that night. We had some opportunities in the third set to win. We had game point in the third set and didn’t get it done and they went up two-one and had all the momentum and then just finished us out in the fourth set,” said Scavarda. “Oxford’s a good team, they’re a top 15 team. It’s nothing to hang our heads on but when we see them again, I don’t expect the same result.”
In recent years, the LOHS varsity volleyball team has emerged as one of the more dominant sports teams in the district. Having won states in 2018 and reaching the state semi-finals in 2019, expectations are generally high for the team.
“Our expectation is to make a run in the state playoffs, that’s kind of how it always is,” Scavarda said. “Being the weirdness of this year and having to start late and not have as much practice…We’re already into the heart of the OAA league schedule and we’ve only had six practices. So, I kind of have to temper the expectations a little bit, but when it’s all said and done and at the time that districts start, I expect us to be able to play with anybody by then.”
The ladies are back taking on Seaholm in the Dragon field house on Tuesday after Review press time.