WESLEY CHAPEL — Steinbrenner coach Lauren Stegenga wants her players to have fun.
“Sometimes they forget to do so and sometimes they take themselves too seriously,” Stegnega said. “And sometimes, also, that’s all the particular advice this group needs.”
That advice worked for the Warriors, especially in the third game, as they swept Class 7A-District 8 foe Wiregrass Ranch 25-20, 25-23, 25-23, giving the team a season sweep of the Bulls and a secure hold on the district’s No. 1 seed.
“We’ve won districts the last four years, and I wish it wasn’t, but it’s our expectation, and not that we’re overlooking districts, but what we’re looking at is we are better each time we touch the floor,” Stegenga said. “If we do that, then we should be very successful.”
The Warriors, who also beat the Bulls (12-4, 2-2) on Sept. 9, improved to 13-2 and stayed undefeated (5-0) in district play.
Leading the way for Steinbrenner were two of the team’s 10 juniors, Lauren Heldt and Avery Bradshaw, plus seniors Rachel Mathison and libero Casey McLean.
“Our future is bright,” Stegenga said of the team’s youth.
The Bulls, led by Grace Olsen’s 13 kills, had a 19-15 lead late in Game 3, but Steinbrenner went on a 4-0 run to tie it, then finished out the game 10-4 and a pulverizing kill.
“That was huge, but the scoring should’ve happened much earlier on. We just had the unforced errors,” Stegenga said. “That happens because we have a lot of power, so it’s about us controlling it. They jumped on us in that game, so once we got on the board, that calmed our nerves and we’re able to play better.”