When Reese Rich took the service line in the third set of their Bi-District Volleyball match, Salado Lady Eagles were trailing the Smithville Lady Tigers 14-18. When she was done, the Lady Eagles had rattled off nine straight points and held a commanding 23-19 lead.
Salado held on as the Lady Tigers made a last ditch effort, closing the gap to 24-23 before their last serve went in the net, lifting Salado to a three-set sweep.
The Lady Eagles will play the 15th ranked China Spring Lady Cougars in the Area Round. The game is scheduled for 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 4 at McGregor High School. Tickets are $5 for adults, $3 for students at the door. District and senior passes apply.
Salado took the first set over Smithville 25-23, trailing for most of it. Lainey Taylor tied the set at 23-23 with her fourth kill of the night with the final two points scored on the strength of Rich’s serve.
Kenslee Konarik and Taylor both had four kills in the set while Haleigh Wilk had three tricky dinks for kills at the net. Wilk had eight assists in the set. Macy Morris and Jordan Ferguson also had kills in the first set.
Wilk had seven assists in the second set, which Salado won 25-18. The Lady Eagles began to pull away in the second set when Sara Ellis served for three straight points for an 8-4 lead. Salado led 17-10 but the Lady Tigers closed to within one, 17-16 when Taylor scored two points on her serve to lead 19-16. Jordan Ferguson scored the last two points on her serve including an ace to go up 24-18.
Ellis and Ferguson led the girls at the service line with three points each followed by Rich, Taylor and Kiara Dabney with two service points each and Taylor with one.
Taylor led the attack in the second set with five kills, followed by Konarik and Macy Morris, two kills each.Wilk had seven assists in the set.
Nikki Poole had four blocks while Wilk and Brianna Waters each blocked a shot for Salado.
Taylor had five kills in the third set. Konarik, Morris and Wilk all had two kills. Wilk had eight assists.
Rich scored nine points on her serve in the third set and put the ball in play on all 10 service attempts.
The Lady Eagles finished the regular season as Co-Champions, a title they share with the Burnet Lady Bulldogs, who they faced in a tie-breaker to determine playoff seeding. The two teams had come-from-behind, five set wins over each other in district but Burnet got the best of Salado in the tiebreaker match Oct. 29 winning in three straight sets.
Salado beat Jarrell in the final district game on Oct. 26 to secure the Co-Championship. They beat the Lady Cougars in three sets, 25-14, 25-10 and 25-17.
Konarik had eight kills in the tie-breaker while Taylor had six.
Poole had three blocks in the match. Wilk had 24 assists. Ferguson led the girls in defense with 20 digs while Ellis had 11. Dabney had three aces in the match.
Salado JV girls fell in two sets to Jarrell Oct. 26, 21-25 and 22-25. The Freshman girls won their match in three sets, 25-18, 19-25, 25-23.