Winning day for Callaway

By Kevin Eckleberry

September 2, 2014

The Callaway High volleyball team, as well as its new coach, was able to enjoy a breakthrough win on Tuesday.

Heading into Tuesday’s home tri-match, the Lady Cavaliers had yet to taste victory this season.

That changed with Region 5-AAA wins over Cedartown and Pepperell.

Callaway is under the direction of Angela Kiker, who is in her first season as head coach after taking over for Whitley Wiltz.

“It is definitely nice to get a win,” Kiker said. “The girls, I’m really proud of them. They came out and worked hard. I was happy because they accepted me so graciously.”

While Kiker is new to the volleyball team, she isn’t new to the school.

Kiker, a graduate of West Georgia University in Carrollton, joined the Callaway High staff for the 2012-2013 school year, and she served as a coach on the girls’ soccer team.

“I knew a lot of (the players),” Kiker said. “Some of them play soccer and volleyball.”

While wins have been hard to come by early on, Kiker said the team is making major strides, despite a critical personnel loss last week.

“One of my key players went down with a possible ACL. So now we have to adjust again,” Kiker said. “But they’re doing well. The kids are stepping up where they need to step up.”

Kiker said a handful of players have provided stellar leadership this season, including Savanna McMillian, one of the captains.

“Her personality’s great, she’s got good leadership ability,” Kiker said. “She will do anything she’s asked to do. In the beginning, she was a little nervous. She’s really stepped it up. I’m super proud of her.”

Kiker said Bailie Bowles has done a nice job at setter, and she has been pleased with the effort of newcomers Taylor Townsend and Kinsleigh Stephens as well.

“They are brand new,” Kiker said. “They played their first volleyball games ever this season. We’re happy to have them out there.”

The team’s lone senior is Sarah Ardnt.

LAFAYETTE CHRISTIAN: The Lady Cougars beat Grace Christian in straight sets on Tuesday.

Lafayette Christian won the first two sets 25-17 and 25-22 before finishing things off with an easy 25-5 win.

In the final set, head coach Rene Gomez said everything came together.

“We were able to attack, we were able to pass, we were able to set,” Gomez said. “When we’re firing like that on all cylinders and making consistent plays, we can dominate the match.”

Miranda Powell had a big day with eight kills and five aces, and she was coming off a strong performance in Friday’s win over Heirway Christian.

Against Heirway, Powell had 17 digs and a pair of blocks.

In Tuesday’s match, Kate Stringham and Alex Smith each had six assists, and Abbey Stodghil had three kills and two blocks.

The Lady Cougars improved to 4-2.