The Lady Rams started on fire by winning game one, but things quickly fizzled against the Brownwood Lady Lions, who came from behind to take a 3-1 District 7-4A win against Mineral Wells Tuesday.
The loss was hard for Coach Sheridan Willard as her team fell into panic-mode with unforced errors by Mineral Wells being Brownwood’s best weapon.
“We were out there getting a little bit panicked,” Willard said. “Sometimes, when young athletes get on the floor they can resort to that panic feeling at times.”
The start of the match belonged to Mineral Wells As the Lady Rams took a 4–0 lead With screenshots by Samantha Ashley, Trista Hopper and Kylie Griffin. The Lady Rams moved further out front with the attacks by Megan Waldrum and Taylor Gary, making it 9-4.
“We started really strong,” Willard said. “We just didn’t duplicate that the remainder of the way.”
By the time Mineral Wells had established a 19-6 lead, it appeared the Lady Rams were going to get their first district win, and then suddenly, the wheels came off the offense.
Heading errors hurt the most, with the team recording 27 errors against 30 kills. Ashley had a team-high 13 kills, and Hopper was perfect on her attacks with a 6-0 mark.
“We have our moments out there,” Willard said. ”The problem for us is those moments are disbursed too far apart.”
While they were able to stay on top in game one, the score began to tighten up and eventually was knotted at 24-24 before Willard called a timeout to calm down her team.
Brownwood went back on top for the first time in the match via a Mineral Wells hitting error. Hopper’s attack off Sidney Dow’s set tied the score. Brooklyn Ellis’ ace gave Mineral Wells the lead again at 26-25, and Ellis’ second hot serve secured the win at 27-25.
“Right now, our runs of errors are hurting us when we put ourselves in a hole with five or six points in a row,” Willard said. “That’s what we saw a little bit of here tonight.”
Game two was the most competitive of the four games as the score was tied five times. Mineral Wells ended up never leading as errors continued to eat away at the Lady Rams’ chances, and Brownwood escaped with a 25-21 win.
The Lady Lions came on strong in the next two games and with Brownwood finding its groove on offense winning games three and four 25-15 and 25-15.
“All the things we need to do are there, but we have to do those as a team,” Willard said.
When Mineral Wells began to panic, the main problem was poor communication as balls hit the floor, and nobody went after them, or players ran into each other, causing errors.
When it came to defense, Paige Rainey’s 18 digs led the way, and Kenzie Lawhon recorded 10. Sasha Kirsch and Hopper had eight each as Mineral Wells had plenty of opportunities with 78 digs as a team.
Hopper led the blockers with four. Ellis and Ashley had two stops each.
Mineral Wells at 0-3 needs to pick up wins against Glen Rose and Brownwood and will play the Lady Tigers twice and the Lady Lions once in the remaining district schedule.
The Lady Rams will have a bye next Tuesday.