Aledo volleyball fans who arrived early enough at the Curtis Culver Center on Thursday to witness the Brock-Holliday Class 2A semi-final match-up may not have known they were to see more of the same when their Ladycats took the court against Friendswood in the Class 4A clash.
Both matches went the maximum five sets, indicative of the quality of play, and teams, at the state level. In fact the sequence of wins was the same for both squads, dropping the first and fourth games and dominating the rubber match.
The first four games of the 2A state semifinal between Brock and Holliday gave little indication of what would transpire down the final stretch in the fifth game. Throughout the match, the advantage had teetered back and forth, with the margin rarely straying beyond two or three points difference.
But in the deciding set and the point count leveled at four each, Brock took the lead and never gave it back, reeling off nine-straight points while Holliday only managed one, resulting in a 13-5 advantage. Brock cruised through the final points, something it had not been able to do at any time during the night. With the surprising finish, Brock advanced to the championship game, beating Holliday, 25-27, 25-22, 25-21, 23-25, 15-7.
After dropping the first game of the match, played at the Curtis Culwell Center in Garland on Thursday, Brock methodically gained the advantage, eventually building a six-point lead midway through the third set. The margin was the largest either team had seen to that point in the match.
“I told the girls before the game that nothing was going to come easy at this level,” said Brock head coach Keith Guyon. “Especially with this [Holliday] team. Since I’ve been at Brock this is the fourth time we have played them, and the first time we have beat them.
“But this was the big one.”
Brock meets Schulenburg in the state final on Saturday. The Class 2A state finals will begin at 11:30 a.m. at the Culver Center.
The first set of the Aledo-Friendswood tilt may have left the Aledo faithful wondering if the Ladycats could stem the overpowering knockdowns from Lady Mustangs’ hitter Jillian Bergeson, who dominated the opening stanza, and ended the night with 30 kills.
But the Aledo defense rose to the task and outlasted Friendswood in the 5-game thriller, 23-25, 25-23, 25-23, 19-25, 15-11.
Leading the defense was Raygan McLelland and Mykah Wilson, who had 38 digs among the two. Briana Sharratt and Mallory Powell had three blocks each, toward the team total of 10, one of which won the final point of the game.
On Saturday, Aledo meets the winner of the Cedar Park-Lucas Lovejoy match, who were still playing at press time. The Class 4A state volleyball championship is set for a 4:30 p.m. start.