Instead of using the traditional final home game (this past Friday) to serve as senior night, Carroll volleyball coach Ryan Mitchell opted for Tuesday, Oct. 14, when the Lady Dragons played Haltom.
The idea was to bring out more fans to recognize a program that is deep, talented and in a position to push toward a second consecutive appearance in the state tournament. Plus, Mitchell wanted to avoid trying to have the ceremony go against the hoopla before the football team’s football game against Euless Trinity.
“It was important for them to go out in a way where they were going to have a good moment for us,” Mitchell said. “We got a good turnout, and the girls really responded to it well and played a good match.”
Hitting the stretch
Carroll (39-2, 9-1 in District 7-6A) always plays an intense style of volleyball. But Mitchell has said that he wants his team to pick it up in the final three games against Trinity (last Friday), this Friday at Colleyville Heritage and Oct. 28 at Coppell.
All four of these teams have clinched the District 7-6A playoff berths. But now, it’s about positioning. But Carroll still has a chance to share or win the district championship.
The Lady Dragons have their second and final bye on Tuesday before they travel to Colleyville. Colleyville Heritage began the week at 10-0 with a match against Trinity.
“Basically, we have four days to get ready for Colleyville Heritage,” Mitchell said. “It’s a great time to have a bye and get rested. Now, we can make our district championship run and move into playoff mode. Every game is do or die. Every game is important. We’re going to use the days off to get through some of the issues we’ve experienced.”
If there is a tie…
There still is a chance that Carroll and Colleyville Heritage could end up in a tie for first place. Carroll needs to win at Colleyville Heritage Friday and then win at Coppell. Colleyville Heritage concludes its regular season Friday.
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The final date of the 7-6A season is next Tuesday. That leaves Friday Oct. 31 open. Mitchell declined comment but if the teams ended up tied, that date would be the one used to play any potential playoff for the top seed in the district. But a lot has to happen.
From the middle
Carroll’s front line is considered one of the best in the state of Texas. But Mitchell believed his offense had become too predictable. The offense wasn’t going through the middle blockers as much as he believed it should.
Throughout the last couple of weeks, there’s been more emphasis of making sure the entire front line is involved. With seniors Kelsey Walter, Becca McSweeney and junior Elizabeth Augustini becoming active, it’s going to help at the pins with senior Madison Drescher, Paige Panter and Megan Porter.
“We haven’t been setting them enough, and we’ve really had to change things in order to correct that,” Mitchell said. “This team has several talented middle blockers. Not making them a part of what we do makes us easier to defend. If we get them involved, then it’s going to make a big difference.”