The Spencer Tigers volleyball team has gotten off to a slow start this year, but coach Karl Reiter believes the team can bounce back if it finds a rhythm.
“We started a lot slower than we wanted, but I don’t think that our record points to the team we are,” Reiter said. “We just started kind of behind the eight ball.”
The Tigers fell to Estherville Lincoln Central, 3-0, Thursday night. Reiter said the setback doesn’t necessarily show the progress he feels the team has made this season.
“Homecoming week is always kind of a hard week to deal with because there’s so much energy and there’s so much stuff going on,” Reiter said. “So we’re not going to take too much away from this, but we’re going to keep working on ball control. I think because we put so much focus on our ball control a couple of weeks ago, some other parts of our game kind of didn’t die down, but it didn’t get the attention it deserves, so we started losing it toward that end.”
The loss drops Spencer to 2-19 this year.
Reiter’s more focused on improving than the team’s record.
“The way volleyball works is it’s one big preseason and one game for the season, basically,” he said. “If we can still be the best we can at the end of the season, I think we’ll be just find. We’ve made some steps toward it. I think we’ll keep making more.”
Those steps come with finding a rhythm, Reiter added.
“We’ve got to find a rhythm somewhere,” Reiter said. “There’s a lot of aspects to the game between passing, blocking, serving, offense, defense. We’re really just trying to really improve. We’re going to focus on the defensive side of things because I believe that that offensive flow and rhythm comes from a good defensive flow.”
The offense should be able to take care of itself, he added. It’s the defense that needs to find its stride.
“I think our offense is really good,” Reiter said. “We’ve got three seniors along the front row between Marissa Salton in the middle, Leah Heikens in the middle and Julia Feldmann on the left side. We also have Amber (Wirtz). Amber tore her ACL last year, so she’s still in catch-up mode.”
Reiter said the team’s focus on ball control in practice and that improvements have been made in that aspect.
“Now we’re going to start mixing it up because I think the ball control is much better than it started off this year,” Reiter said. “We’re still moving lineups around. We’re still trying to find where people fit. Our goal is to be the best team we can be at the end of the year.”
The Tigers travel to Storm Lake on Tuesday to face the Tornadoes.
Photo: Spencer faced Estherville Lincoln Central Thursday night in Spencer. The Tigers fell 3-0.