Paris is off to a hot start

Lady Tiger volleyball is undefeated at 6-0 so far


The Paris Lady Tiger volleyball team used several strong performances this past week to retain its undefeated record.

The Lady Tigers were able to mark victories over Georgetown-Ridge Farm, South Vermillion and Little Illini Conference rival Casey-Westfield.

Paris Head Coach Christy Pinkston noted the challenge of being a member of the Little Illini Conference is present each night.

“This conference has always been very good and very competitive and you can not go into a week expecting to beat a team because of their record,” Pinkston said. “Every night you have to be ready to play at a high level because anyone can win.”

On Thursday evening, the Lady Tigers got out to a quick start against the visiting Casey-Westfield, Lady Warriors, winning the contest in straight sets 25-14, 25-16.

Emma Pinkston led the team with eight kills while adding two service aces, three digs and a block. Lizzie Rouse followed up Pinkston’s performance with seven kills, two aces and a block. Sarah Wells tallied six kills, one ace and two digs. Payton Block led the team with 24 assists through the two sets. Wednesday was another busy evening for Paris as the team hosted South Vermillion, beating the Wildcats in straight sets 25-11, 25-13.

Pinkston and Rouse led the attack for the Tigers again, with the two collecting a combined 13 kills.

Pinkston led the team with seven kills and the lone block of the game while painting the South Vermillion backcourt with four service aces.

Rouse had six kills and one dig. Wells had two kills and two aces. Block had two kills on her only two attempts with three aces and 16 assists. Burger had one kill to pair with her three aces on the evening.

The Tigers started their week on the right foot on Monday, traveling to Georgetown-Ridge Farm and winning 25-22, 25-15.

Pinkston grabbed a team-high nine kills in the contest, four digs and two aces. Rouse had seven kills against the Buffaloes to go along with two blocks and one dig. Wells and Burger each had four kills and two aces, with Wells also digging up four balls. Block had 23 assists, three digs and one ace.

After beginning its 2019 campaign 6-0, Pinkston wants to ensure that the team remains levelheaded despite its success. There are multiple outside factors that can impact an undefeated team, with one of the biggest being the pressure that builds the further a group goes undefeated in a season.

“We have gotten out to a good start this year and that paired with playing a lot of games and other factors can be mentally draining,” Pinkston said. “The girls have to block out those things though and must come out ready to play their game.”

This weekend features another tough test for the Tigers as they take on the Shelbyville Invite.

Paris will begin with group play against Shelbyville, Casey-Westfield and New Berlin. Pinkston is excited for the challenge the invite will provide for her team.

“The girls are going to play multiple games in a very short period of time and we are going to see what they are made of,” Pinkston said. “We need to have the mental strength though to come out and play the best that we can.”

Paris plays today at the Shelbyville Invite at 9:30 a.m.