It was a single game that counted for 60 total points that showed first-year Rochester Hills Stoney Creek volleyball coach Adrienne Leone that she had a team capable of special things this season.
In the first Oakland Activities Association White Division match, the Cougars beat Bloomfield Hills Lahser in three games, one of them a 31-29 marathon.
“I remember after we won that game, I was so proud,” Leone said. “Our biggest obstacles were communicating and playing together. When we won that set, they knew they could do it. It was just building their confidence and believing in themselves. They had the talent.”
That stepping stone helped lead the Cougars to a 7-0 season in the division, sweeping each opponent in three games.
It marks the second straight year that Stoney Creek has gone without a loss in division play, finishing undefeated in the OAA Blue last season.
“I just thought they mentally wanted to win. A couple years ago, I guess they lost a lot, and that’s why they went into the Blue. My seniors went through that and didn’t want to do it again.”
The Cougars finished 23-14 overall and made it to the program’s first district final before losing to Utica Eisenhower.
On the way, Stoney Creek defended its city championship in dominating fashion, beating Rochester High, Rochester Adams and Rochester Hills Lutheran Northwest in straight games.
Leone hopes this year’s success means that there’s more to come.
“I have a setter coming up, a couple girls from JV that look pretty good and eight juniors coming back. It’ll be nice; they’ll know what is expected of them,” the coach said. “With so many kids coming back, they’ll expect more out of each other. They now realize they can beat these other teams, and that they are just as good as other teams.”
The Cougars will be without seniors Alexa Caporuscio, Jessie Sattmann, Emily Hardy and Maddie Delsignore.
“It’s hard because I just had them for one season, but they were really good leaders and bought into what I was teaching them,” Leone said. “They really wanted to win and go out on a good season. I thought they brought all of the team together.”