COVINGTON - Despite dropping matches to Area 2-AAAAA Luella and Warner Robins on Tuesday, the Newton volleyball team is showing signs of getting better with each game.
Newton lost its first match 25-16, 25-10 to Warner Robins before losing to Luella 25-17, 25-18.
"I'm just glad they're making little, tiny improvements. I still have to remind myself that this is still a young team," Lady Rams coach Shandelyn Carter said. "I only have two girls that played varsity last year; everyone else played jv. They're still learning and they're a lot better than they were at the start of the season."
Despite the improvements, they were still unable to top Luella in a very crucial area match.
Even though the area matches only determine tournament seeding, the Lady Rams are in the bottom of the area, only getting wins over M.L. King and Stephenson.
The Lady Lions of Luella started the first game with three aces by Baylie Hicks to take a 5-0 lead.
After Newton closed the gap to 5-2, Olivia Jackson served five straight points, four with aces, to give Luella an 11-2 edge.
While Luella was scoring points in bunches, the Lady Rams were only able to get two or three points out of a service.
In the second match, Newton was able to keep up with Luella as they held on two separate occasions - once to start the game where Raven Prather scored with an ace, the second when they scored three consecutive points, one on a Lynae Bogues ace, to retake the lead 9-8.
Unfortunately, Luella's Ariel Nelson proved to be too much, getting three straight aces to retake the lead.
Newton was able to stay within three points of the Lady Lions before scoring six of the next eight points to take a 23-17 lead.
"We didn't win that last (match) but I am pleased with the way they seem to come together and keep their spirits up," Carter said.
"They still have to learn how to work together as a team. They're some points where we get it, then they're some points when we just don't get it. We always seem to start off at such a nice fast pace Then somehow or another we seem to lose that pace. But what I like about this last game is that they didn't lose that pace. If I could get them to play that hard every time I think we could be a far more successful team."
Warner Robins won the tri-match beating Luella 25-10, 25-13.
Manny Fils can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.