CONYERS - On Thursday, the Alcovy volleyball squad kept Salem's winless record in tact by winning on the road 2-0 (25-10, 25-22).
"This week they've been playing really well as a team," Alcovy coach Amanda Briggs said. "Previously, we haven't been. They worked together (and) talked. They communicated and we've been working on that in practice, and we've been working on the net."
Meanwhile, Heritage picked up a win by topping Apalachee in two games, 25-10 and 25-12.
For the Lady Tigers, they improved to 4-12 overall, while the Lady Seminoles fell to 0-12.
During the first game, Alcovy never trailed. After trailing 6-1, Salem soon cut the lead in half when Alexandria Underwood served an ace.
But the Lady Tigers jumped to a 14-5 lead after a kill by Holly Oakes. The closest the Lady Seminoles got was 17-10 after a kill by Katelyn Connell.
Nevertheless, Alcovy's Leah Anderson ended the game with three aces.
In the second game, Salem took its first lead of the day, 3-2, after a kill by Underwood.
Alcovy tied the game at 15 after back-to-back kills by Anderson and Malaceo Ivey.
After three consecutive points by Salem, Briggs called a timeout to settle her troops down.
"I told them (to be) patient and control the volleyball game," Briggs said. "Control the pace, back and forth."
It worked. The Lady Tigers went on a 9-2 run thanks to several aces by Anderson to end the game.
In both games Anderson finished with six kills and six aces. Courtney Keaton added five kills and one ace, while Oakes and Ashley Grant combined for four kills and six aces.
Underwood led Salem with six kills and three aces. Erica McLean added three kills and one ace, while Connell ended with two kills.
In other action, Heritage (10-12 overall, 5-1 in 8-AAAA) never trailed in either of its games against visiting Apalachee (6-11, 2-5).
"That was a good job of not letting them into the match at all," Heritage coach David Buddenbaum said, "and that's what we've got to focus on is not letting the other team back in the matches."
During the first game, Heritage jumped out to a 6-1 lead after a crushing kill by Mikayla Charles.
Leading 21-9, Heritage's Rachel Jubran ripped off consecutive aces en route to the win.
The Lady Patriots had 13 kills and seven aces compared to just three kills.
The second game was more or less the same, only this time Apalachee scored two more points than it did in the first.
Back-to-back aces by Jubran had Heritage ahead 3-0. Apalachee closed the gap, 16-6, after a kill by Jamie Whatley.
Heritage's Arabia Umrani recorded two straight aces to put her team ahead 22-7.
Overall, the Lady Patriots had 23 kills and 15 aces in both games.
"Oh, we still need to work on a lot of things," Buddenbaum said. "We need to work on taking care of the ball. Our serve-receive was kind of suspect in that (second) game. We actually averaged about a two, and our goal is to average a three, so we didn't really serve-receive as well as we needed to."
Taylor Bailey had a match-high nine kills and five aces. Umrani added four kills and three aces, while Jubran finished with five aces.
"We're working on trying to be more confident with the ball - to be more assertive," Buddenbaum said. "We were aggressive with our serves, and we were pretty efficient with the ball once we did set them."
Jason Murdock can be reached at email@example.com.