Ragan Nickless blows one past two Haxtun defenders in last Thursday’s season opener in Imperial. Nickless led the Lady Longhorns that night in kills. (Johnson Publications photo)

With four games played against Haxtun, there were a lot of digs to be handled. Here, Mallie McNair gets under one of her 16 in the match. (Johnson Publications photo)

Adelaide Maxwell is up to block in action against Haxtun last week. Chase County stood 2-2 after its opening week of action, which included Saturday’s Lexington tournament. (Johnson Publications photo)

Lady Longhorns even at 2-2 after opening week of volleyball

    It’s an even 2-2 record for the varsity Lady Longhorn volleyball team that opened the season last week with a home dual and a tournament on the road.
    Coach Jodie Schuller said she was happy with the come-back attitude her team showed in its season opener last Thursday against Haxtun, Colo., coming back to win the match after dropping the first game.
    After a first match win over Holdrege at Saturday’s Lexington tournament, Schuller felt the team seemed to “run out of gas” and didn’t have the desire to finish, losing the last two matches to Hershey and St. Paul to finish fourth overall.
    However, she’s positive about the team she has on the floor, although coaches are still trying to put players at positions at which they can best utilize their skills.
    Fans were likely to see some changes in the lineup Tuesday this week when Chase County hosted Wray, Colo.
    “We have the right stuff on the floor. We’ll be making some changes we feel good about,” Schuller said.
    After Tuesday’s match with Wray, Chase County has a long break, not playing again until next Thursday, Sept. 14, when they travel to Holyoke, Colo. That will be followed up with the Sept. 16 McCook tournament.
Haxtun match
    After losing the first game to Haxtun 20-25, the Lady Longhorns hammered back to take the next three games, 25-21, 25-21 and 25-16, to win the match.
    “I think we had some nerves that first set,” Schuller said.
    But the coach said she was proud to see her team battle back.
    “It was exciting to see the desire there to finish strong,” she said.
    Strong serving in the fourth game with several aces forced Haxtun “out of system,” she said sending several free balls their way. That allowed Chase County to set up for some of the 23 kills they tallied in the match.
    Ragan Nickless led the team at the net with eight kills, while Adelaide Maxwell and Madison Schuller put down six each.
    As a team, their hitting efficiency was .085, compared to a negative .150 for Haxtun.
    While Chase County had 11 ace serves they also had 11 missed serves, dropping their performance at the line to 88 percent (84-95).
    Madi Schuller had three of the team’s 11 aces.
    On defense, Peyton Fiedler picked up 19 digs. Allison Owings had 18.

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