A young USC Salkehatchie volleyball team fell victim to first-game jitters in a 0 - 3 loss to Columbia College in its season opener. Salkehatchie has 9 freshmen and only one returning sophomore.
Coach Dani Aquino said her young team was full of jitters on their first ever collegiate match, but they showed signs of promise in the second set and gave a glimpse of what is yet to come.
Setter Serah Rego led the offense with 11 assists and protected the defense with 8 digs. Offensively, Connelly Smith led the team with 17 hitting attempts and 7 kills. Defensively, McKenzie Yero led with 18 serve receive passes, 9 digs and 2 aces.
The young team did not have time to rest as it played its second match of the season against Guilford Tech the next day. Although the team bounced back in the first set of the match with a 25 - 17 win, the team ultimately fell to Tech in a hard-fought match.
“What an incredible first two matches for Salk volleyball,” Aquino said. “After working through our first-game jitters, the ladies came back with a renewed focus against Guilford Tech, winning their first set of the season! After some tweaks to the rotation and implementing a few new serve receive stacks, I feel like we are hitting our stride, and I can’t wait to watch them continue to grow.”
Salkehatchie’s next home game will be Friday, Sept. 15 against Cleveland Community College at 10 a.m. and USC Union at 2 p.m. Admission to the game is free.