For the Alcovy volleyball team, Thursday evening marked a special day.
Although the Lady Tigers dropped the match to Ola (25-13, 25-11), it was the first time they played on their official home court.
"We had some home court jitters and that made a difference," remarked Alcovy head coach Suzanne Smith. "So, I told them hopefully it's now out of our system."
Despite the end result, there was an exceptional turnout on hand to watch the five-team play-date, which also included Stephenson and Stockbridge. Members of the football and basketball teams, along with parents, teachers, classmates and coaches showed their support by cheering on the Lady Tigers.
"We're still not quite used to the fact that we're in our own gym," said Smith, "but we are finally home."
Alcovy's Ashley Jacobson led the team with four points, while Shade Nolley contributed with two points.
The Lady Tigers (0-6) held their own midway through the first game against Ola (7-1). Early on, Alcovy led 12-9, but soon thereafter the Lady Mustangs reeled off seven consecutive points en route to the 12-point victory.
The momentum seemed to carry over to the next game, enabling Ola to win the match. It was the third time in a week that Ola has defeated Alcovy.
That being said, it remains too early to pass judgment on where the Lady Tigers will end up this season.
Last year, the Lady Tigers were 0-28 overall and 0-9 in Region 8-AAAA, Sub-Region B. In comparison, Ola fared much better (25-18 overall, 7-1 Region 4-AAA).
Still, Smith remains confident and upbeat about her team, offering encouragement along the sidelines while steering clear of cutting her players down.
"Every now and then I'll ask what they were thinking," said Smith, "but for the most part we try to stay positive."
The Lady Tigers have six seniors this year, and three are returning starters from their first-year squad.