Trojans run gauntlet of four ranked teams

The Hillsboro volleyball team is facing a challenging portion of its schedule.

The Trojans lost to a pair of state-ranked teams at Nickerson Sept. 19, and were scheduled to encounter two more state-ranked teams Sept. 26

Hillsboro traveled to Nickerson on July 19, losing to Douglass, the No. 6 team in Class 3A, 25-11 and 25-21, then dropping a 25-10, 25-12 decision to Nickerson, the No. 6 team in Class 4A.

“Douglass and Nickerson are on a pretty high level—both ranked in state and both very deserving of that,” coach Sandy Arnold said.

“I think we were nervous at the beginning, then I felt like we played a little better in the second game against Douglass, and maybe with a little more confidence.

“We tried really hard to find some weaknesses, but both teams have so many weapons that it makes it so hard,” she added. “When you have miscommunication, that doesn’t help anything.”

Arnold said her team competed best when they attacked aggressively.

“We tried to hit holes this time and they read well,” she said. “But our serving was so-so. We’re pretty decent at spot serving, but we’re working with consistency and also a little more power behind it to make a little tougher.”

The Trojans were to step out of the pan and into the fire Sept. 26 when they host the Kingman Eagles (24-0), the top-ranked team in Class 3A, and Hesston (15-1) ranked third.

“You can’t go into anything scared or worried, you go in to do your best,” Arnold said. “We’ve talked about every time we go out we want to improve from the last time we played. We also want to compete.

“Most importantly, I want us to compete with these teams. I don’t know that we can come out with two wins, but I want to improve ourselves so that when we play the teams that we could beat, we’re at that level.”

Coming—Hillsboro is scheduled to play at Haven Oct. 3, at Emporia Oct. 5 and at the McPherson Invita­tional Saturday, Oct. 7.

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