Chaminade Coach Mike Lynn promised Thursday night's volleyball match against Louisville would be different than the teams' first encounter this season.
He assured anyone who asked that the Eagles would play better than in their four-game loss earlier this month at Louisville for two reasons--Chaminade would show improvement on defense and a boisterous home crowd.
He was right on one count--the crowd was noisy. On the other, Lynn was wrong.
Louisville dominated defensively and won easily, 15-2, 15-9, 4-15, 15-10, in a San Fernando Valley League match at Chaminade.
"Chaminade didn't look like they put it together at all," said Louisville Coach Barbara Gomperz, whose teams have not lost to the Eagles in her two years with the Royals.
Louisville, which increased its record to 5-3 overall and 4-0 in league play, 'out-Eagled' the Eagles by serving aggressively and passing consistently--areas considered Chaminade strengths.
Louisville shut down the Eagles' attack most of the night by bombarding them with hard, fast serves.
And the few times Chaminade was able to get off a spike, the Royals were able to make the plays.
"Our defense was great. We dug everything in the first and second games and didn't let anything hit the floor," Gomperz said.
Louisville held the Eagles to only two successful spikes and one dink in the first game.
Chaminade had 11 kills in the second game, but that was not enough to offset the six points Louisville earned on unreturned serves.
"The way they were serving, it was too much. We weren't able to handle it," Lynn said. "They hardly missed and we missed far too many to win a match."
The Eagles did come back to win the third game with their own aggressive serving and defense.
They even had a 7-3 lead in the fourth game before Louisville turned it around, winning 12 of the last 15 points.
With the score tied, 7-7, and Chaminade serving, Louisville's Anne Fletcher hit successive dinks to put the Royals ahead for good, 8-7.
"They were the better team tonight," Lynn said.
Although the Royals are defending league champions, they weren't considered the favorite this season because five starters had graduated.
They started the preseason 1-3.
"We worked so hard for this. We wanted to prove we're not underdogs," Louisville senior Claudia Viozzolli said.
Mary Hudson led Louisville with 10 kills, and Fletcher added nine.
Chaminade's Anna Suarez had a match-high 16 kills.
Chaminade, which won the Calabasas tournament and finished second in the Serra tournament in San Diego, fell to 8-3 overall and 4-2 in league play.