CHAPMANVILLE — The Man High School volleyball team seems to be picking up right where it left off last season when the Lady Billies were 19-11.
Man won the Logan County tri-match on Wednesday at Chapmanville, the defacto Logan County championship, as the Lady Billies toppled host Chapmanville 29-27, 20-25, 25-17 and then downed Logan 25-12, 25-22 in the second match.
Man is off to a 2-0 start to the new season.
Last year, the Lady Billies had a 4-1 record against county rivals.
“I believe this year’s team is more well-rounded than last year’s team,” Man coach Orlando Washington said. “Last year’s team had a winning record but I think this year’s team may be better in my opinion.”
Washington said the Lady Billies have a lot of room for improvement.
“I’m the type of coach that I’m never pleased,” he said. “I’m happy that we won but I really didn’t like how we played in either match. I expect us to be better and be more consistent. But we’ll be OK. The officials told me that I have a better team than what I think that we are.”
The Lady Billies started sophomore Tiffany Belcher, who had several kills along the front line. The other starters were: sophomore Summer Combs; senior Sarah Grimmett; sophomore Hannah Harvey; freshman Hunter Harvey; and junior Mika McCoy.
Chapmanville (1-1) beat Logan 25-23, 24-26, 25-13 in the third and final match of the night.
Logan’s varsity team is made up of: Aarron Ward; Hannah Workman; Adriana Herrera; Hannah Hunter; Kealeigh Morgan; Racheal Fortune; Haley Meade; and Hunter Napier.
Logan second-year coach Chelsey Stowers (formerly Chelsey Stockdale) said her team needs better communication.
“Our match went well but we did not play like a team the first match against Man and ended up losing,” Stowers said. “We were letting our nerves get the best of us and were simply not communicating at all. They know they didn’t play like the team they are and the team they can be. We did a lot better against Chapmanville though. They played hard and communicated a lot better. Our problem is we get down in the beginning of the match and then have to fight our way to get caught up and have to work 10 times harder.
“I’m hoping our first game jitters are done and gone and we can move forward and play like we should be playing the rest of the season.”
For Chapmanville Regional, it was the debut for new head coach Johnny Williamson.
“We hung in there against Man. We just need to have a little more experience and more playing time,” Williamson said. “All in all it was a good way to start. We got a win and we’re 1-1.”
The Lady Tigers started senior Alex Baisden and sophomore Autumn Blankenship along with a quartet of juniors – Hillary Hainer, Haley Justice, Katie Lemon and Bethany Perkins.
Sophomores Addy Lucas, Savannah Wiley and Shian Meeks all saw significant time off the bench.
The Man volleyball team was scheduled to return to action on Thursday night at Logan. Man then goes to Tug Valley next Tuesday and then to the Greater Beckley Christian tri-match on Sept. 12 before hosting Mingo Central and Wyoming East on Sept. 17 at 6 p.m. in the home opener.
Logan (0-2) hosted Man on Thursday night and is slated to host Mingo Central on Monday before hosting Wyoming East on Tuesday. All matches have a 6 p.m. first serve. Then on Sept. 12, Logan plays South Charleston, Riverside and St. Albans at the St. Albans Quad Match.
Chapmanville is scheduled to see action again on Tuesday at home against Poca in a Cardinal Conference match. The Lady Tigers then host rival Scott on Sept. 12 in another league contest. Both matches have 6 p.m. first serve times.