HUTCHINSON — Once McPherson High’s volleyball team got over an early case of the hiccups, it resembled the juggernaut it was expected to be.
The Bullpups dropped their very first match of the season on Saturday in the Salthawk Preseason Invitational, but charged back with five straight wins to finish 5-1 on the day.
The Bullpups, ranked No. 4 in Class 4A Division I, more than doubled the eighth-ranked (5A) Newton Railers 25-12 in the first set of the day’s first match, but inexplicably went flat in losing 19-25 and 14-25. They then lost their first set to Salina South in their second match, but once they righted themselves they didn’t lose a set the rest of the day.
“Overall I was happy with the weekend,” MHS coach Christy Doile said. “The loss to Newton was disappointing, but an early lesson. We would of liked to be on the top court at the end of the day, but with the early loss in the tournament format we did the best we could do on the day. We really had to shake off some doubts and confidence going into the Salina South match.”
The Bullpups wound up defeating Salina South (15-25, 25-6, 25-20) and then stormed past Liberal (25-8, 25-16), Andover Central (25-15, 25-22), Goddard (25-12, 25-10) and Maize (25-18, 25-11).
“Great way to end versus Maize,” Doile said. “Our girls hung in there on the sixth match of the day and seemed to get better as the day went. We can honestly say we finished strong. It is always fun to see the new kids get their first shot on the varsity court.”
Doile said Mandi Cooks, Brooke Schrag and Aislinn Hughes all played well as they are being blended into the mix of returning players.
The Bullpups head to Buhler on Tuesday for a triangular that also includes El Dorado. Match time is 5 p.m.