TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 10
WOODBURY 3, MAHTOMEDI 0
The bleachers were packed with parents, families, students and youth volleyball players on Youth Night at the Woodbury girls' volleyball match on Tuesday night against Mahtomedi.
Many of the fans were excited to see if the Royals could continue their perfect season. It took little time for the Royals to improve their record to 8-0 on the season with a 3-0 sweep over the Zephyrs.
The strong start to the season had been a hope for the players and coaches, but the perfect record isn't the focus for the season ahead.
"We've been playing together as a team throughout the beginning of this season and it's fun to see as a coach," said Woodbury head coach Brad English. "They have a will to win and that shows each game played."
The first set started off strong for the Royals as they were using their strongest skill on the team: serving. Woodbury has relied on aces to take some big leads early.
That happened again on Tuesday night as Courtney Cahill served a handful of points in a row and extended the Royals lead to 10-4 in the first set. Woodbury eventually won that set 25-18.
The second set was quicker and controlled completely by the Royals as they won 25-9. The third set took some determination to win. Woodbury was up 24-14, but Mahtomedi came back to make it 24-21 before the Royals were able to record the last point and win 25-21.
"These girls never give up on a set or a point," English said. "They always believe they can win a set and they work together to get the lead back and win the set."
English said he's proud of the girls and their work effort both in practice and in matches. He has a lot of depth with a lot of good players on the team, which means he has the ability to put more players onto the court each night.
"It's fun to see them have fun each match," English said. "We just need to continue working hard this season as we gear up for the conference season."
The conference season will start for the Royals on Tuesday, Sept. 17, at 7 p.m. as Woodbury travels to Mounds View. The Royals will have an entire week to prepare for their first conference match of the season.
English understands how difficult the Suburban East Conference will be this season and he's excited to see how matches unfold.
"I have a lot of respect for the programs in our conference," English said. "I'm looking forward to learning more about these teams and working hard throughout this regular season."
English took a moment on Tuesday night to talk about Youth Night.
"It's so important to have these types of night to bring the community together," English said. "It's great to have this opportunity to share the love of volleyball with our community members and for these girls to show their love each match."