After a shaky start to Thursday’s home quadrangular, the Hays High volleyball team found the spark Indians’ coach Christin Nunnery has been looking for.
Hays dropped a tight three-set match to Salina South before rebounding with a win over Abilene in three sets and ending with a straight-set victory over Norton, posting a 2-1 record in the quad.
The Indians, now 10-9 on the season, captured the last four sets of the night and will look to keep the momentum moving forward.
“I feel like right now we got a rotation that we like,” Nunnery said. “Right now it’s putting the puzzle together. We’ve tried multiple rotations and the last two games that I saw today, we found a good puzzle.
“I feel like now that we have more players stepping up and more hitters stepping up, we’re going to be a hard team to stop.”
Hays took the first set, 25-18, against Salina South and had a chance to clinch the second set with a 24-23 lead but were unable to capitalize, falling 27-25 in the second and 25-20 in the third.
“We came out a little sluggish,” Nunnery said. “I felt like our first game against South, we did what we needed to do and then got complacent and kind of sat back and waited for them to make the mistakes instead of us trying to go out and win a game.
“That’s the difference when we win and when we lose. We either play to win or we play not to lose. When we play not to lose, that’s when you kind of see us struggle.”
Hays dropped its first set to Abilene 25-18 and rallied to take the second set 27-25. The Indians also trailed for most of the third set, finding themselves down 21-17 before notching eight of the next 10 points to edge the Cowgirls, 25-23.
“We had to keep our serve in that one,” Nunnery said. “We had missed quite a few serves today. In that particular set, it was like you got to keep your serve and let them make the mistakes, and that’s what happened.”
The Indians finished the night strong against Norton with a sound 25-19, 25-16 victory.
Junior Tasiah Nunnery led the Indians with 39 kills in the quad while senior Hannah McGuire recorded 61 assists and senior Kallie Leiker notched 49 digs.
Christin Nunnery also credited the play of senior Jaysa Wichers.
“We know that she has that potential to be that go-to (player) every time, and today she showed us that,” Nunnery said. “It wasn’t necessarily that anybody else was struggling, she was just putting the ball down when we needed them to go down.”
Nunnery said the Indians enjoyed the atmosphere in their first home matches of the season.
“We kept saying that we’re so excited that we don’t have to be in a bus or suburban,” Nunnery said. “There were quite a few people here. I peaked up every once in a while and saw some football players. It’s been a long time since there’s been other teams supporting Hays High volleyball.”
The Indians will play in the Great Bend Tournament on Saturday.