Bobcats hit mid-season slump
Less than a week after getting its biggest win of the season, the Basehor-Linwood High School volleyball team fell into a mid-season slump.
"That's really all it is," coach Mardy Robinson said. "It's some volleyball, but it's a lot of us playing three days out of four and not getting any practice time to correct our mistakes."
The three-meet journey began Saturday, Sept. 22, in Tonganoxie at the Tonganoxie Tournament. Robinson said she was a bit nervous going into the tournament because her team has never played well in Saturday tournaments. But after beating Mill Valley and sweeping the first home meet of the season, she was optimistic that the Bobcats could do some damage in Tonganoxie.
She was wrong. Instead, the Bobcats managed to win just one match and it was in the seventh place game.
"We definitely didn't play up to our potential," Robinson said. "If you start slow in a tournament, it's hard to come back from that."
Start slow the Bobcats did. The Bobcats dropped the first match of the day, 15-12 and 15-3 in a tough battle with Gardner-Edgerton. Gardner went on to win the tournament. The Bobcats lost the second match to Piper, 15-11, 9-15 and 9-15, in a contest Robinson thinks they should've won. After that, they were beaten up by Manhattan, 15-1 and 15-2, and then taken down by Tonganoxie, 15-9 and 15-5.
The lone win at the tournament came against league foe Perry-Lecompton in the seventh place game. BLHS swept Perry, 15-12 and 16-14.
The Bobcats returned home on Monday for their rescheduled quadrangular with Atchison, Immaculata and Pleasant Ridge. After starting off hot with a win against Atchison a two-game sweep, 15-6 and 16-14 the Bobcats then reverted to their Saturday ways. Losses to Pleasant Ridge, 15-9, 4-15 and 6-15, and then Immaculata, 10-15 and 9-15 sent the Bobcats to their sixth loss in their last eight matches and it had the team wondering why.
"We played really well and we were scrappy, but we played some good teams," senior Jamie Cochran said.
Junior Lindsay Cunningham agreed with her teammate in saying that she felt the team played hard, but at times she said they lost their focus.
"We kind of struggled and didn't really get a lot going in either of those last two matches," Cunningham said. "We just kind of stood around stuck in the mud and didn't get to as many balls as we should've."
The following night, the Bobcats traveled to Immaculata to play a league triangular with Imac and Tonganoxie and again the Bobcats came up short.
"We just didn't play well," Robinson said. "I'm not sure why. We got off to a slow start and never really recovered."
That slow start came by way of a 4-15, 9-15 loss to Tonganoxie in the first match of the night. Robinson said the team did bounce back and play tougher against Immaculata in the nightcap, but the fatigue factor kicked in and they were unable to overcome it, losing 15-7, 15-7.
The mid-season slump has put the Bobcats below the .500 mark for the first time since early in the year. They currently stand at 9-13, but Robinson said she's optimistic that they'll get the kinks worked out.
"We had a team meeting and kind of talked everything out," Robinson said. "We'll get it, we just need to get back to school and get back to doing homework and get back to a normal routine. It'll be nice to have a week before playing again."
The Bobcats will take to the hardwood again on Tuesday, Oct. 2, when they host a quadrangular with Santa Fe Trail, Piper and Sumner. That will be BLHS's final home meet of the year and it will be the final home meet ever for five BLHS seniors.
"It'll be emotional, especially with five seniors," Robinson said. "Hopefully we can send them off right."