By TONY EIERDAM
For the Mineral Wells Lady Rams, a volleyball team still trying to mix and match the right combinations, the pre-district matches mean more about continuity and finding the players who play best together rather than the won-loss record.
Although the Lady Rams dropped a pair of matches in a home dual to Glen Rose and Joshua, respectively, MWHS head coach Taylor Eggleston saw a lot in the two matches that will help her sort out the individuals who play best together.
The Lady Rams fell 25-17, 25-11, 25-20 to a solid Glen Rose team, and fought tooth and nail with Class 4A Joshua in a 25- 20, 25-18, 25-15 loss.
“This is still a process,” Eggleston said. “I think (Tuesday) was actually a step forward for us. I saw a lot of good things.
“BB (senior libero Bethany Allen) did well on the back row, especially in the Joshua match, and I was extremely pleased to see (varsity newcomer, sophomore hitter) Caroline Clarke make some in-match changes (to her technique) and send some balls down.
“Caroline had some problems early, but she fixed it, and that is a big deal considering she is a sophomore.”
Eggleston also pointed to her setters, senior three-year varsity letterman Erin Burgeson and sophomore varsity newcomer Riley Bullock, as having outstanding matches.
“Riley and Erin set the ball well but each also had good defensive games,” she said. “They have both improved defensively, and they have been working hard on that. Riley also had some great serves.”
After dropping the first two games against Glen Rose, the Lady Rams jumped out to a 4-2 lead in game three. Although the Lady Tigers took the lead for good on the 13th rally, MWHS had some bright moments.
Glen Rose extended its lead to 19-11 but the Lady Rams buckled down and refused to give in.
After cutting the lead to five points courtesy of Lady Tigers’ errors as a result of strong Lady Rams’ serving, Bullock got hot at the service line and fired three consecutive aces to cut the lead to 20-18.