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Serving and hitting still the focus for the Lady Bobcats

Tonight: Lady Bobcats vs. Worland at 7 p.m. at Hot Spring County High School (Senior Night)

THERMOPOLIS — Last week was a busy week for the Hot Springs County High School Lady Bobcats volleyball team. With all of their matches at home the Lady Bobcats hosted Lovell on Oct. 3, Lander on Oct. 4 and after their match vs. Lander kicked off their annual tournament that ended on Oct. 5.

The Lady ‘Cats defeated Lovell 3-0 (25-20, 25-18, 25-22), lost to Lander 3-0 (25-22, 25-21, 25-18) and finished second in their tournament losing to 2A Riverside 2-1 (25-21, 24-26, 16-14).

It was a weekend full of volleyball for the Lady ‘Cats and one of their biggest goals was to continue to build confidence after a rough loss to Buffalo the previous week.

“We built confidence at times but probably not fully,” said HSCHS volleyball coach Shannon Hill. “Riverside was a really scrappy, consistent team and for us to not play consistently against them was our downfall. Lovell went pretty well and I was proud of them for winning in three because we almost let them win the third game.

“Going against Lander it came back to our errors. We played against them much better than we have in the past but had a ton of hitting errors. Beating teams handily in pool play and played consistently which was great. But we’re still working on getting over that hump of hitting and serving consistently.”

Finishing off rallies in high-pressure situations is another area that Hill wants her team to focus during this week’s practice. She believes her team is right there and close to putting it all together. They just need to keep being diligent and things will slide into place.

“Being able to finish when the pressure is on is a big thing. We missed a serve when it was 24-21 against Riverside and we can’t have things like that happen. In Game 1 vs. Lovell we missed seven serves, we won the game but you just can’t have things like that happen. We’ll continue having lots of talks about that and hopefully, it will all click and when it does it will be regionals,” said Hill.

Working on consistency and working through those high-pressure moments in matches takes practice and patience. Hitting and situational drills have been emphasized in practice this week for the Lady ‘Cats.

Getting a feel for that perfect hit and coming out on top when your back is against the wall are ways the Lady ‘Cats are working on developing that consistency and coolness under pressure.

“We’re working on a ton of serving. Talking about where your hand should be, being mindful of what it should feel like and what a good serve feels like. The girls are aware of that and are just working on the consistency,” said Hill. “Also we’re working on pressure on offense like this drill where they have to get a certain amount of points before they can get out of the drill, otherwise they have to keep going. That’s a really huge mental drill we haven’t done this year.”

Two matches are on the table for the Lady Bobcats, first up is a home match vs. Worland today at 7 p.m. and Saturday they travel to Glenrock for a 3 p.m. match.

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