It was homecoming for both Cody and Powell last week, so the students were out in force to support their respective volleyball teams Thursday at Powell.
The Fillies emerged victorious, winning 3-0.
“The Cody-Powell atmosphere is awesome,” junior Brittan Bower said. “It is definitely like none other and super fun to play in. With it being the homecoming game I definitely think it added an extra exciting element. It was great to get the win on homecoming, and we are so thankful to have such great fans and support especially at an away game.”
With the victory the Fillies are now 14-3 overall.
“It was a fun atmosphere with the crowd,” coach Stephanie Birch said. “We warned the younger girls before the game to get ready for it. So I am pleased with their focus and ability to not panic in a loud environment.”
Cody quickly pulled away in the first set thanks to kills by Riley Welch and a few Powell errors. The Fillies quickly found themselves up 13-5.
“We came out really fired up with great crowd support and were determined to have a good start,” Bower said. “We tried to focus on being intense and mindful in order to keep them from getting momentum.”
Powell went on a little run to pull within four but then Cody took control again, outscoring the Lady Panthers 8-3 to make it game point. It took a couple tries before Cody closed out the first match 25-16.
“We had a really good week of practice,” Birch said of the team’s start. “We went back to the fundamentals and really did a good job this week focusing in on the things we needed to improve on.”
Powell did a better job of staying with the Fillies in the second game. Cody grabbed a four-point lead after a kill by Autumn Wilson and Powell errors. The Fillies maintained that until a couple errors of their own allowed Powell to pull within one at 17-16. Cody scored the next point and then a four-point run that included an ace by Grace Shaffer made it 22-17.
“That’s been the story of this team this year,” Birch said. “They are never out of it. They don’t panic and just keep doing what they need to do.”
A Bower kill, ace by Wilson and kill by Welch closed out the 25-18 win.
“I think we were able to pull ahead and win the second game because we all had grit and we had been in this situation many times before and knew that we could do it,” Kennedi Niemann said.
Cody struggled through much of the third game and early trailed 6-2. Powell maintained a lead until an ace by Shaffer tied it at 11. A consecutive ace gave Cody a 12-11 lead. The game was tied at 14, 16, 17 and 18 before the Lady Panthers scored three in a row to go up 21-18.
“There was a little letdown,” Birch said. “Powell started serving a little tougher and swinging more. We just stayed the course. These girls know that if we just keep working bit by bit we can overcome any surge by another team.”
A tip and kill by Wilson pulled Cody within one before Powell made it 23-21. Powell missed its next serve and then were out of rotation to give Cody two points to tie. Back-to-back kills by Wilson ended the game at 25-23.
“We struggled in the third game because we got away from attacking the ball and being aggressive,” Niemann said. “We pulled out the win because we knew that we had to start being aggressive and then good things would happen.”
Cody travels to Casper to take on Kelly Walsh on Friday. Saturday the Fillies host Rock Springs at 3 p.m.
“Defensively we will have to be ready to move and have a great weekend of blocking (to be competitive),” Niemann said.