By Chuck Reherman
NORMAN – Continuing the roll.
Yukon’s No. 10 ranked volleyball team continued its run through Central Oklahoma Athletic Conference play with a three-set sweep of Norman Tuesday night in Norman.
The Millerettes improved to 4-1 in conference play, 9-3 overall, with their win straight win over the Lady Tigers in conference play.
Yukon will face their toughest challenge of the season on Tuesday, hosting No. 6 Edmond North in a conference match. YHS haas never beaten Edmond North on the volleyball court.
The Millerettes did have a hard time putting Norman away in the first two sets. YHS won 25-21 and 25-21. But, in the third set, YHS dominated and rolled to a 25-9 win.
“The first two we had a tough time finishing once we were up, but in the third one we were able to buckle down and put away quickly,” Millerette head coach Rachel Allred said. “It’s always hard to get back focused after long breaks and time away from each other.
“Our warm up was a bit rough and we knew we had to clean it up quick and start strong from the start,” she said. “We got up by seven or eight in both the first two, but had a difficult time in serve receive and with hitter errors in the last half of each of those sets.”
The Millerettes did get off to a fast start in the opening set. YHS led 10-3 early on and had a 15-7 lead.
But, Norman went on a four-point run to make at 15-11, then went on a 4-2 run to close to 17-15.
The Millerettes went back up by four, but Norman used a kill and an error to make it a two-point set. YHS got a kill from Chloe Hartman that led the way to the 25-21 win.
In the second set, the Millerettes again had a seven-point lead, 11-4, early on. Yukon led by as many as eight points before Norman made a late run and closed to 23-21.
Yukon, though, finished with the final two points on serves from Brianna Worth to take a 2-0 lead in sets.
The third set belonged all to the Millerettes. Worth and Mallory Scott gave the Millerettes control from the service line. Defensive plays from Hartman, Abbi Gorbet and Baylie Thiel also turned in strong defensive games.
“I told them that winning is great, but to be the best we can be and go as far as we plan on going this season, we have to play to our potential every game and not just be happy winning, but win big like we should be,” Allred said. :To not get comfortable. To always be pushing.
“We know we need to take full advantage of these next few days of practice to be prepared mentally and as a team for Edmond North on Tuesday,” she said. “We love our chances and our goal is to continue to prove ourselves in this tough conference. And, I know the team is up for the challenge.”
The Millerettes stepped away from conference play earlier and posted a three-set sweep from Piedmont on the Millerettes’ home court.
YHS posted a 25-9. 25-10 and 25-16 win over the Lady Wildcats in a match that was never really close.
The Millerettes dominated the pace of the match with their service game. At one point in the second set, Worth served up 10 straight service aces. YHS 22 aces in the match.
“We did better in the third match of getting the energy back,” Allred said. “We were more solid toward the end. It is an endurance thing a mentality of you win that big in the first two, you get comfortable in the third one.
“You still have to put pressure on the ball,” she said. “And not be okay with making silly mistakes or giving them points that they really didn’t earn. We had that comfortable lead, but you can’t get comfortable until you hit that 25 points.
“We were able to get all 15 girls on the court and that will be good for us overall.”
The Millerettes had scrimmaged Piedmont in the pre-season and knew they would bring in a strong offensive attack. But, Piedmont couldn’t handle the Millerette service game.
Yukon used their strong service game to open a 10-3 lead early in the first set. The lead expanded to 22-7 with six more aces.
With the Millerettes leading 23-9, a Worth shot was blocked out of bounds by a Piedmont defender and then Rachel Kittell hit a kill through the middle of the defense to put the set away.
Worth had 10 service aces in the second set that ran the Millerette lead t0 18-2. YHS led 24-5 before Piedmont ran off five points. Kittell again scored the game ending point for a 25-10 win.
In the third set, the Millerettes pulled away from a 7-7 tie. Hartman had an ace to take the lead and kills from Kittell, Worth and Sunny Middleton to put the match out of reach.
By Chuck Reherman