Clear Lake Roundup: Clear Falls riding wave
A 4-4 record during the first week of the first varsity volleyball season has the Clear Falls Lady Knights riding a positive wave of momentum.
"The opening week really was a whirlwind, but it was a good week of competition, and the players are learning so much," Clear Falls coach Lyndsay Hodges said. "They're like little sponges right now and they're soaking everything up."
Clear Falls, which doesn't have a senior class, started the season with a 26-24, 25-10, 25-18 victory at Nimitz on Aug. 9, and the Lady Knights added three more wins over Cy Lakes, Cy Ridge and Klein at the Cy-Fair ISD Tournament last week.
Losses came against Class 5A area No. 1 Cy Woods, Oak Ridge and Jersey Village at the Cy-Fair event, and at Klein Oak, and the early success could have the Lady Knights in the right frame of mind to open District 24-4A play with a victory at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 23, at La Marque.
"We're not taking anything or anybody lightly, and we know to do what every team wants to do, and that's battle for a playoff berth, we have to earn everything in our first year of varsity play," Hodges said. "We're going to see what we can go out and grab."
Junior setter Rebecca Watson, sophomore libero Morgan St. Germain, sophomore outside hitter Katie Bludau and freshman hitter Alyssa Enneking have been regular starters early on, with junior right side Erin Farmer, sophomore middle blocker Kylee Reid and junior hitter Macy Richard have also seen plenty of early action.
"The starting lineup is getting firmer, but we're still looking at different combinations and who works well together," Hodges said. "Players continue to take on different roles and we're seeing how they react.
"We're very pleased, and we want the players to really enjoy this great experience and journey. We want them to have fun and feel happy about what they are doing and how they are playing."
Clear Falls' schedule has the Lady Knights playing on Friday, Aug. 19, at Lamar, and they're also at the Aldine ISD Tournament on Aug. 25 and 27.
The next home outing is at 6:30 p.m. on Aug. 26 with Westbury.
Lady Wildcats earn mid-pack finish
Clear Creek volleyball's 6-3 start included a 3-3 middle-of-the-pack finish at the Duncanville Tournament last week, and overall, coach Scott Simonds is pleased.
"We've got a few kids who are new to the varsity and learning their way, and we played a ton of matches in a very few days with very limited practice time to get ready for some very good competition," the coach added. "I think we'll improve, and the sky is the limit for this group, but we need to be more balanced offensively, our blocking needs to improve, and our serve receiving passing needs to become more consistent.
"I'm also pretty concerned with some nagging injuries, and if we have to, we'll hold them out to get healthy for district because those 14 matches are what really matter in the end, along with the playoffs."
Junior outside hitter Ashley Smith had 33 kills in a win against Arlington Martin last week, and is off to a great start, according to Simonds.
Clear Creek meets Langham Creek in the opening round of the Spring Branch ISD Tournament at 4 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 18, at Spring Woods High School, and either Spring Woods or El Campo at 6 p.m. the same day at the same location.
Knights eager to start
Clear Falls football is still a year away from its first varsity season, but the Knights host the Hitchcock varsity (Class 2A) in both teams' season opener at 7 p.m. on Aug. 25 at Cy Falls High School.
The Knights, who have a junior class this season (still no seniors), did the same thing last year with only freshmen and sophomores and fell to Hitchcock 32-0 in what is a little taste of varsity play before taking on a whole season in 2012.
All other Clear Falls sports are competing at the varsity level in District 24-4A this school year.
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