CROWLEY — Year after year, high school volleyball fans have come to expect the Notre Dame Lady Pios to not only be one of the better programs within the Acadiana area, but throughout the state.
And year after year, the Lady Pios live up to those expectations evident by the fact they won state championships in Division IV (2011) and Division III (2010) in each of the past two years.
Although they began the season as one of the hottest volleyball programs in the area, winning 14 of their first 15 matches, the Lady Pios hit somewhat of a rough patch that saw them drop eight of 12 matches including five of six from Sept. 15-26.
“I have a really short term memory,” Lady Pios coach Tara Young said. “Our season started out really strong, but then we went on a little bit of a downturn. It wasn’t frustrating,” said Young of the losses. “I would say it was more unsettling than frustrating. It was unsettling because often times we weren’t maximizing our potential. But I felt that was pretty typical. I’ve been getting better at not panicking this year unlike in year’s pasts. I still felt a sense of urgency, but I wasn’t panicking.”
But Young and the Lady Pios rebounded from the losses in successful fashion and are currently on a 10-match win streak which includes six wins at the Newman Invitational this past weekend to improve their record to 26-9 overall.
“No, I wasn’t surprised by how well we played,” Young said. “I was hoping that we would go there and put things together and we did. I was hoping we would show up and I felt like after a couple of good practices we had gelled as a team. I figured it was only a matter of time.”
At the Newman Invitational, the Lady Pios defeated Destrehan, St. Scholastica, McDonogh 35, Morgan City, Lakeshore and Assumpiton en route to capturing the tournament championship. What was even more impressive besides the victory themselves; is the fact the Lady Pios swept all six opponents in those victories.
“We didn’t drop any sets in the tournament,” Young said. “Those were huge victories for us and I think it puts us in the right frame of mind moving forward. Collectively as a team, I think we should be very confident going into the final week of the season.”
Follow assistant sports editor Eric Narcisse on Twitter @tdanarcisse.