It wasn’t as sharp a home opener Thursday as Polk County volleyball coach Molly Hill would have preferred.
But given the steamy conditions and playing the third match of opening week, Hill gladly accepted the result.
Polk County claimed a 3-0 win over East Henderson, handing the Eagles a 25-16, 25-19, 25-20 setback in a non-conference match.
The Wolverines (3-0) returned home after back-to-back wins at Tuscola and Asheville Christian and ran into a pesky East Henderson squad (0-2). The Eagles kept the match close in every set, leading at points and rarely letting Polk take a large lead.
But the defending 1A Western Regional champions found a path to victory in all three sets, pulling away late in each.
“We’ve had some really competitive games,” said Hill. “I was just in the locker room telling the girls that there are a lot of expectations not just from me and not just from them, but all these people in the stands, too.
“We looked a little bit tired at times. This was a hard week and it was so hot in here. But we got the win, and I’m happy about that.”
Polk led just 16-15 in the opening set before scoring nine of the final 10 points, with two Kristen Hall kills closing the set.
The score also stood at 16-15 in the second set when Marilyn Castillo hammered a kill down the line to prompt an East Henderson timeout. The Wolverines still closed on an 8-4 run to grab a 2-0 advantage.
Polk led much of the third set, with East Henderson rallying late before a hitting error closed the match.
Grace Lauer had 10 kills and four blocks for Polk, with Castillo posting nine kills and Mireya Roman adding six. Sydney Waldman had 28 assists and 15 digs, with Kristen Hall also posting 15 digs.
Carolina Castillo had 22 digs for the Wolverines, who travel to Shelby on Monday to start a three-match road trip.
“We had moments tonight when we played fast and confident,” Hill said. “We’re mainly just second guessing ourselves on things. It’s definitely mental and something that is fixable.”