It was a successful return to league action as Athena's regional league team beat a game Nottingham Rockets at the Leicester Sports Arena last Wednesday.
Coach Paul had a big squad to call upon as he called up a few players from the local league team and Lisa, Joy, Erin and Julia all got to show what they can do.
Athena started with a strong team and breezed into a healthy lead. Erin made her regional league debut as libero and produced a series of good passes to Sarah. With Petra and Kristy as outside hitters, Sam and Kamila through the middle and Alysia as opposite, Athena were too strong for the Rockets. Liza then came on for Sam for her first taste of regional league action and played very well.
The second set was a disappointment as Athena put in a very rare poor performance. Their movement in backcourt was slow, passes inaccurate and that meant a close, tight set where Rockets were always slightly ahead. Athena lost the set 25-19.
In the third and fourth sets, Athena played like their usual selves allowing Paul to make changes and experiment. Joy came on as libero and put in one of her best performances, while Julia showed her qualities as outside hitter with a string of good serves and hits. Rebecca came on for Kamila through the middle and Liza got a few minutes at the end of the fourth set.
All-in-all, it was a good match with Coach Paul able to change things around and bring in a raft of new players as part of their development. With two 17-year olds, a 20 year old and with 2 DMU students, it is good to see younger players starting to make their mark with the regional league squad.
Athena won 25-9, 19-25, 25-12,25-11 .... and Kristy bagged her first MVP of the season.