RUIDOSO – Like night and day.
That doesn’t just describe how the Ruidoso volleyball team played from one game to the next, Oct. 3, in their three-game loss to Goddard.
According to coach Kellie Smith, it also describes how the Warriors played Tuesday compared to just about every other match this season.
“We’ve seen ourselves implode after a game like that second one, but we didn’t do that,” Smith said after her team’s 25-23, 25-11, 25-23 loss to the Rockets. “They stayed together, they didn’t get down on each other. It was amazing to see, even during the struggle, they stuck together.”
Ruidoso (2-10) started things off strong, despite facing a team that was bigger and taller than them. The Warriors had a lead for a majority of the first game before the Rockets (5-9) put together a short run near the end to win.
Game two saw Ruidoso fall into the same rut they had in matches past, falling behind early and making numerous mistakes.
Goddard took advantage and flew to an easy victory.
Now the question was, could Ruidoso bounce back from such a poor performance? Smith was happy to see that the Warriors could.
“I don’t know if I can say this in a strong enough way. The team you saw on the court tonight for Ruidoso was a team we haven’t had this season,” Smith said. That was a team, it wasn’t just a group of six girls. It was a true team.”
While Ruidoso didn’t win – a late game rally tied it at 21-all before the Rockets held on to win – the fact that the third frame was so competitive bodes well for the Warriors with District 4-4A play right around the corner.
After contests against Roswell and Robertson, the Warriors head to Portales, Oct. 10.
“The fact we turned things around is what we’ll focus on in our next games before district,” Smith said. “We’ll feed off of what we did tonight.”