The Marco Island Rays volleyball team is so young and inexperienced they seem to improve during the course of a match.

Tuesday night, that certainly seemed the case as the gritty Rays fought gamely before falling to Gateway Charter in four games.

“We found a leader in Shannon O’Regan,” said head coach Kelly Monnot.

O'Regan is the only senior on the squad.

“I couldn’t be more proud of them coming back emotionally,” the coach said. “They came together as a team tonight.”

Monnot fielded a comparatively veteran squad last year that advanced to the playoffs. This year’s team will be learning on the fly.

Some of that learning took place in the Rays’ lone win in game three.

For the record, they Rays fell 15-25 and 24-26 in the first two games, won the third, 27-25, then dropped the fourth, 12-25.

“We have great potential,” Monnot said. “It’s just every day in the gym getting better. It’s just going to take some time. It’s moments like tonight we have to build on.”