The Delaware Hayes High School girls volleyball team is hoping the third time is the charm.

The Delaware Hayes High School girls volleyball team is hoping the third time is the charm.

For the third consecutive season the Pacers defeated Northland in the opener. The previous two seasons, they followed with losing streaks. They finished 2-21 in 2006 in the first season with Doug Franz as coach and 3-18 last season.

But after beating the Vikings 25-9, 25-8, 25-7 on Aug. 23, the Pacers won their OCC-Capital Division opener last Tuesday over Franklin Heights 25-10, 25-14, 25-15. Now their objective is to ride the momentum into a stronger season.

"This time, winning the opener felt different," Franz said. "We're playing much better than the previous two seasons and we're doing a great job across the board. We knew it was important to start well because confidence goes a long way to keeping everything moving forward.

"We know the deeper we get into the OCC, we'll face adversity and we're going to find out how much we've grown as a program and how we react to it this time around. It's all about moving forward."

Delaware will play host Tuesday to Watkins Memorial and travel Thursday to Big Walnut in a pair of league matches.

"Big Walnut has tradition and I've heard they're up again this season," Franz said. "But we don't really care about our opponents. I want us to focus on us and our strengths and weaknesses and work on getting better.

"Thus far, we've really minimized our unforced errors and we've served quite well. Everyone has lifted their performance. Our setters, Carly Shaw and Sarah McKee, have done a nice job. (Middle-hitter) Ashley Sprau has been great and consistent. All of our hitters -- Megan Swan, Jackie Smith, Jen Crozier and Kasey Parker -- have done well. Obviously, everything starts with passing and our defensive specialists have done a great job, too."

One of the major differences this season is the patience and poise the team has displayed, according to Franz.

"We're not making those unforced errors," he said. "We're keeping the ball in play and letting other teams make mistakes. Plus, when we do make a mistake, a bad pass or whatever, we're not in panic mode. We worked a lot on our out of system offense. When things don't go perfect in the offense, we're keeping the ball in play, playing defense and waiting for our next opportunity."

•The boys golf team has slumped a bit as it has shown some of its inexperience in league matches.

After finishing third in the first of four hole OCC-Capital rounds Aug. 13 at Apple Valley, the players competing for the Nos. 3-5 positions began slumping, causing coach Mike Nesselroad to juggle his lineup for the second round Aug. 18 at Granville.

The result was a fifth-place finish in the seven-team league.

Entering the third round Wednesday at Darby Creek, the Pacers are fourth at 6-6, behind Mount Vernon at 12-0, New Albany at 10-2 and Watkins Memorial at 7-5 and ahead of Big Walnut at 5-7, Olentangy Orange at 2-10 and Franklin Heights at 0-12.

"We have to find some consistent play from No. 3 to No. 7," Nesselroad said. "They all have skills, but they've been inconsistent. Maybe it's just the inexperience that makes them be up and down.

"Only one of those five guys had played in a league tournament before this season. Now all of the top seven have played at least one tournament, so we'll see if anything changes in the third round."

In the first two rounds, Matt Mosca (73, 81) and Tyler Carney-Debord (74, 81) led the way. Pat Kennedy shot 85 and 95.

In the first round, Peter MacDonald had a 91 and Christian Rupp had a 97. In the second round, Jackson Coolahan had a 96 and Joe Babbitt had a 105.

"Matt and Tyler have been consistent, but we can't have them worrying about having to carry the team," Nesselroad said. "They need help. The other guys are working hard and doing what we're asking. They just have to be more consistent and maybe they will be now that they've gained the varsity experience."

At a glance

Below are the recent results and coming schedules for the Hayes boys golf, boys and girls cross country, girls tennis and girls volleyball teams:

BOYS GOLF

Aug. 21 -- Lost to Marysville 170-172 at Oakhaven. Tyler Carney-Debord was medalist with a 40.

Last Monday -- Defeated Central Crossing 162-174 at Oakhaven. Matt Mosca was medalist with a 37.

Last Thursday -- Def. Westerville South 162-172 at Oakhaven

Tuesday -- At Oakhaven vs. Big Walnut

*Wednesday -- At third round of OCC-Capital tournament at Darby Creek

Saturday -- At Mount Vernon Colonial at Hiawatha

CROSS COUNTRY

Aug. 23 -- Boys: Finished sixth (132) of nine teams behind champion Gahanna (47) in Mount Vernon Invitational. David Oliver (seventh, 17:31), Steve Swisher (16th, 17:56) and Daniel Nethers (17th, 17:56) led the way; Girls: Finished 12th (348) of 13 teams behind champion Upper Arlington (41). Eva Kostyu (78th, 23:46) and Kathleen Jackson (81st, 24:00) led the Pacers.

Last Saturday -- Competed in Westerville Classic

Wednesday -- At Delaware County Invitational at Big Walnut

Saturday -- At McGowan Invitational at Watkins Memorial

GIRLS TENNIS

Last Monday -- Def. Central Crossing 5-0

*Last Tuesday -- Lost to Watkins Memorial 4-1

Last Wednesday -- Match against River Valley postponed to Sept. 8

*Tuesday -- At Big Walnut

Wednesday -- Home vs. Davidson

Thursday -- Home vs. Westerville South

Of note: The Pacers are 4-2 overall and 2-1 in the OCC-Capital.

GIRLS VOLLEYBALL

Aug. 23 -- Def. Northland 25-9, 25-8, 25-7 in opener

*Last Tuesday -- Def. Franklin Heights 25-10, 25-14, 25-15

*Last Thursday -- Def. Mount Vernon 25-20, 18-25, 25-13, 26-24

Last Saturday -- Competed in four-team tournament at Walnut Ridge

*Tuesday -- Home vs. Watkins Memorial

*Thursday -- At Big Walnut

*OCC-Capital contest