Lady Bull­dogs get first-time berth in state vol­ley­ball tour­na­ment

Westside Eagle-Observer - - SPORTS - MIKE ECKELS meck­els@nwadg.com

LAVACA — For the first time since it was con­ceived by two friends on a bus, the De­catur Lady Bull­dog vol­ley­ball team is play­ing in the state tour­na­ment af­ter its de­feat of the Lady High­landers Oct. 15.

De­catur and Eu­reka Springs faced off in the first round of the 2A West Dis­trict tour­na­ment in Lavaca. The Lady Bull­dogs needed the win in or­der to get an au­to­matic berth in the 2A State Vol­ley­ball play-off in Paragould.

As was the case in the two pre­vi­ous meet­ings be­tween these two teams, the Lady Bull­dogs eas­ily de­feated the Lady High­landers in three straight sets to ce­ment a place in the state play­offs which be­gan Oct. 23.

Fourth seed De­catur squared off against the first seed Hack­ett Lady Hor­nets in the se­cond round of the dis­trict tour­na­ment Oct. 16.

In the open­ing set of the con­test, it looked like the Lady Bull­dogs had a chance to beat the Lady Hor­nets. Be­hind the lead­er­ship of Desi Meek, De­catur hit the court run­ning as the team man­aged to keep pace with the stronger Hack­ett team. When the set was tied at 12, the Hack­ett coach called a time­out to re­group his be­wil­dered team. Af­ter the time­out, the Lady Hor­nets pulled ahead of the Lady Bull­dogs and even­tu­ally took the first set, 25-13.

From that point for­ward, it was all Hack­ett. The Hack­ett girls took the re­main­ing two sets, 25-7, 25-11, to claim the vic­tory and move on to the semi­fi­nal round.

The De­catur Lady Bull­dogs are now 6-12 over­all and 6-6 in the con­fer­ence with a fourth-place fin­ish in the dis­trict tour­na­ment.

De­catur trav­eled to Paragould Oct. 23 to face St. Joseph in a 1 p.m. match (af­ter press time) at Crow­ley’s Ridge High School.

West­side Ea­gle Ob­server/MIKE ECKELS

Stephanie San­doval (De­catur 21) races to in­ter­cept a pass from Au­drie Chaney (Hack­ett 10) dur­ing the De­catur-Hack­ett vol­ley­ball match at Golden Ar­rows gym in Lavaca Oct. 16. The Lady Bull­dogs lost to the Lady Hor­nets in the se­cond round of the 2A North­west Dis­trict tour­na­ment.

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