RALEIGH — The playoffs are new season to Leesville Road volleyball coach Taine Mergenthaler, meaning that the team’s spotless undefeated record in the regular season doesn’t mean anything now.
But even in the new season, the Pride are still without a loss.
Leesville cruised in its 3-0 sweep of visiting Cary, winning 25-19, 25-9, 25-10.
“I know the record is still ongoing, but it’s not about that any more. It’s about playing just better for than hour, hour and a half, or whatever you’re playing these other teams,” Mergenthaler said. “The best team doesn’t win this thing, it’s the team that’s playing the best at that time. Hopefully every night that we get the chance to play, we’re the team that’s playing the best.”
The Pride (23-0) rattled off 34 of the game’s final 45 points.
“It took us a little while to find our spots,” Mergenthaler said.
Cary (11-10) made the playoffs for the seventh straight year, no small accomplishment for a team that’s been without a player taller than 5 feet, 11 inches for most of those years.
Coach Philip Goodloe’s team will lose three seniors from this year’s team – Leah Blackley, Rachel Weisz and Morgen Yarasheski. Weisz, one of the top setters in the region, will be “irreplaceable,” said Goodloe.
Players like Weisz, “they come around every now and then,” Goodloe said. “I got compliments from refs (on her play) after almost every game.”
Leesville Road will host Riverside in the second round on Tuesday. The two teams are ranked No. 1 and No. 7 in the latest News & Observer area rankings.
Blake: 919-460-2606 or twitter.com/JMBpreps