SHERIDAN — Sheridan High School volleyball lost to Thunder Basin High School 3-0, dropping the Lady Broncs to 4-11 on the season and 0-2 in conference play.
The Lady Broncs competed well against Thunder Basin for the first third of the set. During the remainder of the set, it was the inconsistent play by Sheridan that allowed Thunder Basin to win, 25-17, 25-16, 25-16.
“We definitely hung with them in the sets but made too many errors to let that margin increase,” said Lady Broncs head coach Eric Frey. “Thunder Basin, by all means, played even ball. Ultimately I think we gave them the game by the errors we created.”
Sheridan tried to mount a comeback in each set, but the gap was too much to overcome.
“I thought we passed well and that we hit well, but our hitting percentage has to come up,” Frey said. “I felt that we were a little tentative at times.”
Frey said it was a combination of being excited about the first home game while also being nervous about making a mistake.
Sheridan had a couple of serves that went too far, landing over the baseline in the first set and costing the team points. This was corrected and Sheridan did much better serving for the rest of the match.
The Lady Broncs are usually a good passing and serving team, Frey said. During the preseason, passing was the main focus during training and has led to the great passing as a team. Now Frey wants to see a higher percentage of those passes turn into points on the board for the Lady Broncs.
“We are sometimes overrunning the ball and not seeing where we want to put the ball at times,” Frey said.
One way the Lady Broncs can accomplish this is to change at which angle the players are hitting. The Lady Broncs are approaching the ball head-on with the net, making it easier for the defense to set up the block.
Frey said he wants the Lady Broncs to change the angle by turning their shoulders while hitting, aiming down the line of the net or down the sideline, making the ball less predictable. Frey wants the angles to vary each time a player goes to hit the ball, aiming at the more open area of the court.
Frey said Taylor Larson did a good job of changing the angle she hit at, earning points for the Lady Broncs.
Improving the hitting percentage will be a focus moving forward. Though the Lady Broncs lost, Frey is using this as a learning opportunity for the team, knowing there is a lot of volleyball left to play this season. Losing is never easy, but there will always be struggles in life, Frey said, and in both cases, the player will learn from the mistakes, move forward and try to prevent them next time.
“I liked the energy we had for the whole match and from the fans,” Frey said. “Our team never really gave up or got down. We didn’t see any negativity on the court which is good. When losing you can see some teams fall apart, but they stayed together collectively.”
The Lady Broncs travel to Gillette to take on Campbell County High School Saturday for another conference match.