Following a sweep last week, the Sealy Lady Tigers improved to 4-2 in District 25-4A play on the volleyball court.
Through the first round of squaring off against district opponents, Kim Boyd’s squad only dropped contests with state-ranked Fulshear (No. 3) and Needville (No. 15) and didn’t lose a set in their four wins although the El Campo Ricebirds came close last Tuesday evening in Sealy.
The hosts battled back from a 14-8 deficit to take the opening set, 25-22, before getting out to an 11-6 lead in set two. The Lady Tiger lead eventually swelled to 19-12 but the Ricebirds rattled off their longest run of the night en route to staking claim a 21-20 lead and forcing a timeout from Coach Boyd.
The message clearly resonated as her team battled to break a tie at 25-24 and although El Campo responded with a point after a timeout of its own, Sealy grabbed the next two points to come out on top and take a 2-0 lead.
“The thing with El Campo, and even most teams, if you get into the mental game that's when teams are going to start shutting down and that's what I emphasized with the girls; it's going to be a tough game,” Boyd said after the game. “The second you do something good, it's in their face. The second they do something wrong, it's in their face.”
The volume certainly increased following the big plays and the Lady Tigers used the momentum to take the third and ultimately final set, 25-19, with the final point coming on one of two service aces from Sydney Rose who also added three assists.
Junior Brylie Nedd led the way in the kill (15) and aces (5) categories and added 11 digs. Classmate Ally Dickens led the team with a trio of blocks and added nine kills and senior Raegan Newsome collected six kills and nine digs.
Sophomore Breanna Brandes assisted on 28 scoring plays to lead the team and registered six kills and four aces while teaming up with junior Avery Oliver for the team-second best two blocks. Junior Alyssa Foertsch recorded 15 digs and three assists, junior Brooke Kram had 12 digs and senior Haley Reese added a block and played a role in the offensive attack as well.
Sealy closed last week’s play with another sweep, this one at the Royal Falcon’s place where the hosts scored 9, 3 and 11 points in each of the three sets with Dickens and Reese both collecting eight kills to lead the team. Nedd followed with six kills and then it was Newsome with five.
Brandes collected 21 assists and 11 service aces to lead the team in both categories and Foertsch registered seven digs and tied with Rose for a team-second best three assists.