The teams that can put it all together and execute at the right time are usually the ones who end the year on top.
That's the way the Muskie junior boys' volleyball team is trending and its confidence is starting to rise after dispatching the visiting Dryden Eagles in straight sets last Wednesday afternoon at Fort High.
It was the second straight win for the Muskies, who improved to 5-3 in NorWOSSA play.
“We all did our jobs, our serving was great, our third contacts went in, our decision-making and reading was very good,” lauded Muskie coach Terry McMahon on Thursday.
“We did a lot of good things yesterday.”
The Muskies got off to a great start in the first set against the Eagles (3-5) here last Wednesday, jumping out to a 7-2 lead before Dryden made a run to tie it.
But instead of panicking, as it might have done earlier this season due to inexperience, the black-and-gold settled down and took the set by a 25-18 margin.
“We kept our cool where previously in the season we may have started letting our mistakes get to us,” noted McMahon.
“I've been telling the team all season to stick to our game regardless of what's going on and worry about the next point. I think they're finally starting to get it and it's paying off.”
Fort High then cruised to another 25-18 decision in the second set before taking the third exhibition one by a 25-9 count to snare its fifth win of the season. That puts the Muskies just behind the undefeated Sioux Lookout Warriors (7-0), who they were slated to face in the NorWOSSA regular-season finale yesterday at Fort High (the outcome wasn't available as of press time).
“The boys are starting to see what they are capable of and their hard work is paying off,” McMahon enthused.
"I've been asking them all season to trust the process and their development has come so far by doing so. So our confidence is up.
“We'll get back to work in the gym and fine-tune some things for the final push,” he vowed.
McMahon feels as though Sioux Lookout has some tough servers, a big left side, and a couple of tricky middles. So, the Muskies will have to be ready to shut down the Warriors' left-side and be on their toes for their tips.
“We just have to play our game and we will be fine,” he reasoned.
The NorWOSSA playoffs are slated for Nov. 8 in Dryden and McMahon feels as though his team is heading in the right direction as a cohesive unit ahead of the post-season.
“I think we are peaking at the perfect time mentally and physically,” he enthused.
“Our last two games have been our best in all aspects. I think we are in a great spot heading into the playoffs and will be the team to beat,” he predicted.