Soldotna’s Sarah Rice digs the ball during a Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020 volleyball game against Homer High School in the Alice Witte Gymnasium in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Soldotna’s Sarah Rice digs the ball during a Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2020 volleyball game against Homer High School in the Alice Witte Gymnasium in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Megan Pacer/Homer News)

Homer netters top SoHi

Mariners rebound from Friday loss

By MEGAN PACER

Homer News

Coming back from a Friday loss to Kenai Central to play with confidence, the Homer volleyball team topped the visiting Soldotna Stars three sets to one on Tuesday night in the Alice Witte Gymnasium in Homer.

Homer moved to 5-1 overall with scores of 25-15, 25-14, 24-26 and 25-13.

The Mariners controlled the first two sets, easily maintaining their lead in the first. In the second set, both teams struggled to take the lead, with the score being tied repeatedly up to 6-6. Homer then broke away, fueled by a number of aces from Laura Inama.

The Stars came back in the third set to challenge the Mariners, keeping the game close all the way to their two-point victory. But it wasn’t enough to keep the Mariners from running away with the fourth set and sealing the game.

Both Homer head coach Stephanie Carroll and Soldotna head coach Luke Baumer said mental errors plagued their teams Tuesday night. For Soldotna, in a building year, Baumer said the match against Homer was the first varsity away game for some of the younger players.

“(For) a lot of JV players coming up to varsity, it’s definitely a very intimidating thing,” he said. “Especially when we come to Homer. Homer’s a very difficult place to play in. The fans here are great — they keep the energy up really high for them. So even if we go on a run, we know it’s probably not going to last long.”

Baumer said the Stars did a good job adjusting during the game and working their control of the ball. The team’s serving game was more hit and miss, he said.

“When we’re on, I think we’re probably one of the best serving teams in the area for sure,” Baumer said. “But when we’re off, we’re definitely off.”

It’s easier for the younger players to get shaken by mistakes, making it harder to dig their way out.

“And then they’re in their own heads,” Baumer said. “And that was kind of the big thing for us tonight I think — it was a mental game today. … We definitely play a lot better than that.”

Carroll said the mental errors for Homer came in during the third set. But, she said the Mariners played with a lot more confidence after the Friday loss.

“Last weekend we had our younger girls going up against Kenai. It was the first like, they’re real big competition, so they were pretty nervous and kind of had a rough weekend,” Carroll said. “So this week I just told them to come out and play with confidence and they did.”

Carroll said the team’s passing game is getting better, but still isn’t as consistent as she’d like.

“Our serves were not as good last weekend, but they seem to have rebounded to where we’re good with our serves,” she said. “And they don’t give up on balls, as you could see there’s a lot of — when it goes into a scramble they usually do pretty good at keeping up with that.”

Baumer said Homer is the “scrappiest team” Soldotna has seen so far this season, and that theirs was also the best defense the Stars have seen so far.

On Tuesday, Inama lead the Mariners with nine kills, eight digs and four aces. Katlyn Vogl had five kills, four aces and two digs; Melanie Morris had five kills and one dig; Tonda Smude had four kills, two aces, one assist and six blocks; Gracie Gummer had four kills, one assist and two blocks; Amber Hull had two kills; Hannah Hatfield had nine assists, two aces and four digs, Brooke Shafer had seven assists, three aces and one dig; Sela Weisser had eight digs and an assist; and Lizzie Flodin and Zoe Adkins had two digs each.

More in Sports

Kenai Central's Sawyer Vann controls Nikiski's Wyatt Maguire at 125 pounds Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021, at Nikiski High School in Nikiski, Alaska. Vann notched a 7-6 victory. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Area wrestlers collect mat time before Thanksgiving break

Area wrestlers got in some mat time Tuesday before the Thanksgiving break.… Continue reading

Assistant coach Taylor Shaw leads the Kenai River Brown Bears during a game Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021, against the Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Brown Bears start search for new head coach

The Kenai River Brown Bears issued a press release Friday about staff… Continue reading

Soldotna junior Liam Babitt holds a grip on South Anchorage’s Britten Hamilton during the 215-pound final of the Lancer Smith Fall Varsity 2021 Invite on Saturday, Nov. 20, 2021 at the Menard Arena in Wasilla, Alaska. (Photo by Jeremiah Bartz/Frontiersman)
Soldotna crowns 4 champions at Lancer Smith

The Soldotna wrestling team finished fourth Friday and Saturday at the Lancer… Continue reading

Kenai River Brown Bears forward Bryce Monrean tries to find a way through the defense of the Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues during a first-period power play Friday, Nov. 19, 2021, at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Jr. Blues come back to take series from Bears

The Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues lost not only a 2020-21 season to… Continue reading

tease
Hockey roundup: SoHi sweeps in Kodiak; West wins End of Road tourney

The Soldotna hockey team swept Kodiak in the first high school games… Continue reading

A brown bear feeds on a salmon. (Photo by C. Canterbury/USFWS)
Refuge Notebook: Bears, uniquely built to respond to winter

With the new snow and temperatures dipping into the single digits, you… Continue reading

Kenai Central's Caden Warren surveys the ice against West at the End of the Road Tournament at Kevin Bell Arena in Homer, Alaska. (Photo by Sarah Knapp/Homer News)
Kenai, Homer hockey lose to open tourney

The Kenai Central and Homer hockey teams both opened the End of… Continue reading

Caden Triggs of the Kenai River Brown Bears celebrates his first-period goal against the Springfield (Illinois) Jr. Blues on Thursday, Nov. 18, 2021, at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex in Soldotna, Alaska. (Photo by Jeff Helminiak/Peninsula Clarion)
Brown Bears topple Jr. Blues

By JEFF HELMINIAK Peninsula Clarion The Kenai River Brown Bears received two… Continue reading

Most Read