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story.lead_photo.caption Westside Eagle Observer/MIKE ECKELS Desi Meek (Decatur 1) spikes the ball into Lady Spartan territory during the third set of the Decatur NWA Classical Academy senior volleyball match at Spartan Gyn in Bentonville Aug. 2.

BENTONVILLE — In a pre-season volleyball scrimmage Aug. 2, the Decatur Lady Bulldogs chalked up their first win for 2018 when they faced the Northwest Arkansas Classical Academy Lady Spartans at Spartan Gym in Bentonville.

Since taking over the Decatur team last May, coach Tajie Turner has moved the program in a different direction than in previous seasons.

"The team has really improved in practice so far this summer," said Turner. "I have four exceptional players that I plan on rotating through the lineup that can play any position. But my entire team has shown they understand volleyball and are ready to commit to the sport, to the team and to each other."

The Lady Bulldogs showed confidence as they waited for the Lady Spartans first serve. It did not take long for Decatur to built a healthy lead over Classical Academy. The Lady Spartans tried several times to get back into the match, but the Lady Bulldogs were just too strong.

The first set went to Decatur, 25-10. The match ended with Decatur taking a four-set sweep, 25-16, 2-10 and 25-11.

The Northwest Arkansas Classical Academy Lady Spartan program started shortly after the Decatur Program four years ago. This game marked a milestone in its program, the first time the Lady Spartans hosted a team in its own home gym.

Before the match started, Turner reset her entire game plan, moving all of her players into positions other than the ones in which they normally play. Of course, there was grumbling throughout the lineup about the change. But, after the girls took their seats on the bus following the game, Turner explained the reason for the changes.

"I moved everyone around in different position and I know many of you didn't like that," said Turner. "You didn't like those changes, did you?" Most of the team agreed.

"I wanted you, girls, to understand what your teammates experience in their respective position so that you could better appreciate what they go through during each match," Turner explained.

Decatur Lady Bulldog volleyball begins its 2018 season at home (possibly in the new middle school gym) Aug. 21, beginning at 5 p.m.

Sports on 08/08/2018

Print Headline: Lady Bulldogs claim victory in scrimmage match against Lady Spartans

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