By Chuck Reherman
An off night.
That may be the best wayt to call Yukon’s match with Norman.
The Millerettes went into their second meeting of the season against Norman looking to come away with a Central Oklahoma Athletic Conference win. It didn’t happen and it didn’t happen fast.
Norman took advantage of the Millerettes off night to sweep the match in three sets, 25-16, 25-13 and 25-11, on the Millerettes’ home floor.
Norman took control of the match in the opening set and even though the Millerettes looked like they would get back into the fray at the start of the second, the Lady Tigers turned things around and opened an eight-point lead to put the second set out of reach.
“That was a disappointing night,” Millerette head coach Rachel Allred said. “It is always disappointing when it is not to our potential and this was nowhere near to our potential. Even when we played them in their tournament back in the first week of school, it was much better competition than it was tonight.
“We just had unforced errors after unforced errors,” she said. “We struggled with our serve-receive in getting passes too tight to the nets. We had several hitting errors, lots of blocking errors and we really struggled to close the block on their outside hitter. And, they killed us on the outside line too, we just didn’t adjust ot it all night long.”
The Millerettes were coming in off a long weekend and had been out of school five days, which may have had an affect on the match.
“It was a lot of things that didn’t help,” Allred said. ‘They were distracted by a couple of calls at the beginning and even from the freshman game, so they already going in they had that mindset about the refs. But, it was going both ways and it shouldn’t have set us off.
“We had five days off, we had a late practice on Monday, it was hot in the gym, practice was short and that was a distraction,” she said. “There were a lot of factors, but main point was from the start they got frustrated and angy, not at each other, but it internalized all their frustration and it just goes downhill from there.
“We have had that happen before, but we have been able to channel it to make us more focused, but we did not get more focused, it just got worse.”
The Millerettes were down by four, 20-16 late in the opening set and saw Norman score the final five points to win 25-16.
But, YHS came out and scored the first four points in the second and seemed to have gotten things righted. The Millerettes had used a kill from Addie Wimmer and a Hattie Hughs service ace in the 4-0 run.
Norman came back to make it 6-4, then appeared to have tied the set 7-7. But a reversal on a call gave YHS the point and an 8-6 lead and a spark.
Norman, those snuffed out the spark with a threee-point run to take a 9-8 lead, then ran the margin to 14-11.
A Wimmer kill made it 14-11, but Norman went on an 11-1 run to end the set 25-12.
Norman took control of the third set after a 1-1 tie with a 5-1 run to lead 6-2 and extended the advantage to 10-4.
The Millerettes did get back to within 17-10 on a Wimmer ace and a pair of Bri Worth kills. Norman, though, stopped a Millerette rally and finished the match with an 8-1 run.
“We did get the lead in the second set, but things just fell apart,” Allred said. “It was more of the unforced errors. Even though we were up 5-1, we made a mistake and we get in our heads about falling apart all though we are up.
“I told them in the locker room Norman gave us the first point of the third set and it was quiet,” she said. “I told them, they looked done and just wanted to get it over with. It was miserable, no one was having any fun, they weren’t getting refocused and get back on track. They just wanted it to be over.
“I told them it was like trying something for the first time and you absolutely hate the taste and you never want to eat it again. I don’t ever want to taste that kind of game again. That is what we need to learn from it. This is how bad it sucks, how feels like afterward and how much we did not enjoy it. That is how much we are not proud of how we look and that it hate it so much we do not want to see it again.”
The Millerettes had only 12 kills in the match and one block, both season lows. Wimmer had six kills and Worth five.
The Millerettes will take the court again on Thursday, hosting Stillwater in a COAC match at 6 p.m. The team heads to Bartlesville the next day for a tournament.