After having the start of their season delayed for a month due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Huntsville Lady Hornets quickly made up for lost time.

Huntsville volleyball opened its 2020 season in dominant fashion on Tuesday, sweeping both Cleveland and Bryan Rudder in front of their home fans.

"Somebody asked me after our first game how it was, and it was exciting," Huntsville head coach Cody Hassell said. "We're just really blessed to be able to play. Several months ago we didn't know if that day would happen, but here we are at 2-0 and getting ready a big run of four games coming up this weekend."

The Lady Hornets started the day with an afternoon match against Cleveland, and wasted no time taking control. They rattled off a big run early to take the first set 25-8, and went on to take the final two 25-6 and 25-12. Jalyn Elliott had six aces, with Alyssa Fielder and Kayla Cooper leading the way for offense.

Huntsville followed this up with another three-set win (25-16, 25-20, 27-25) against Rudder later in the evening. Fielder recorded 10 kills for the Lady Hornets, while Madison Grekstas finished with five kills and three blocks. Natalie Hesterman also impressed, serving eight aces.

Hassell credits to the team's veteran leadership for helping them hit the ground running despite an unusual offseason.

"We're fortunate that we have seven seniors on this team, and for several of those seniors this is their third year on varsity," the coach said. "There hasn't been anything that's happened as of late that's been easy, but it's been nice having them. They know the coaching staff, we know them, and they know when they walk in the gym that it's time to go to work."

Next up for the Lady Hornets is a trip to Lake Creek on Friday, where they will take on the Lady Lions and Bryan.