Jeff Hurndon Photography
Union Grove players Emily Carr (16), Camille Cameron (7) and Nina Salinas (21) awaits in a defensive position during a match earlier this week. The Wolverines will take on Ola and host Dutchtown today.
Not many teams take Union Grove to three sets in volleyball. Nobody has done it in the Wolverines’ last three matches.
But today they will meet one of the teams that did. The Wolverines will meet Ola and host Dutchtown, teams that hope to slow the Wolverines’ inevitable march toward a state-playoff berth. With the season winding down, everybody’s trying to get in prime position for their region tournaments, and the Wolverines are no different.
They blasted Morrow and Mount Zion in their latest matches Tuesday, taking the minimum two sets to dispose of each. Mount Zion went down 25-13, 25-9, while Morrow fell 25-7, 25-5.
Ola, however, gave Union Grove a fight the last time out. It took the Wolverines three sets to win after the Mustangs prevailed 27-25 in the first set. The second set went 25-12 for Union Grove, and the final set went 16-14. So Union Grove coach Laurie Sponsler knows her team could have its hands full all day today.
“We played pretty good on Tuesday night,” Sponsler said. “The girls played well, talking well and digging balls well.”
The Wolverines have not played Dutchtown yet, but Sponsler is wary of the Bulldogs after hearing that they beat Jonesboro — a team that beat Union Grove in three sets at the beginning of the season.
“(Dutchtown) should be a good match,” she said. “They beat Jonesboro, then lost to Lovejoy. Jonesboro is usually the stronger team, so I’m not sure what happened that night.”
At 15-3 overall, the Wolverines can’t find much to complain about in their game, though a coach can always find something that needs work. The Area 4-AAAA tournament isn’t far away, scheduled for Oct. 6-8 at Forest Park.
“I think we’re passing really well, hitting our serves pretty well, but we’re a little weak in blocking,” Sponsler said.