The Waxahachie Lady Indians dominated in every facet of the game en route to a convincing win over Forney in their first home district game.
Waxahachie got off to a hot start and didn’t let up as it swept the Lady Jackrabbits 25-13, 25-14, 25-11.
“What I told the team the best part of that game was that we didn’t have a third game letup,” coach Sandy Faussett said.
“Sometimes when we’re playing pretty well we let up in the third set. I didn’t see that at all tonight. I saw a team that has had all of the tournament play pay off when it comes to our composure late in the game.”
The Lady Indians (23-3, 2-0 in 15-4A) did anything but let up in the final frame. They started with eight straight points and a 12-2 run and finished on a 7-1 run to close out the match.
“This is such a momentum game and sometimes when you don’t get off to a strong start and don’t shut the door, they take off with it,” Faussett said. “When we can keep our composure and not let that happen, it pays off big time.”
Runs were a big part of the Lady Indians’ game Tuesday as they had six different stretches of at least four straight points.
“You get more and more confidence and you get more aggressive,” Faussett said about getting long scoring runs. “We play games in practice where the first point is worth one, the second is worth two, the third is worth three and that mimics what it’s like in a game.”
The eight-point run to start the final frame was sparked by senior libero Lacie Tucker, who served all eight of those points.
“That’s a big momentum changer,” Tucker said. “Missing serves can sway momentum and runs like that help us keep it.”
Tucker led the team in the serve receive and in good passes by going 25 for 28. She also only had two errors. The libero was also second on the team in digs with 10.
“She’s been strong this whole season,” Faussett said of Tucker. “She was named all-tournament when we were at Byron Nelson. She’s been a steady, defensive leader on the court.”
Senior setter Kate Praslicka led the team in most categories recording a triple-double with 10 kills, 21 assists and 12 digs. Junior middle blockers Kristen Foster, seven, and Carly Hess, six, combined for 13 kills while helping lock down the center of the court defensively.
“That’s our biggest strength. We have a line-up where we can move our hitters around,” Faussett said. “So on top of having such strong hitters, we move them around to different spots on the court. Kate (Praslicka) doesn’t always hit left. She’ll hit left twice then hit right once. And we have two other hitters that do the same thing. So that gives us a distinct advantage and we’re tough to scout.”
While Waxahachie had no problem with Forney on Tuesday, games like this can definitely propel a team forward.
“I feel like we were very confident coming in and we never let down,” Tucker said. “We took care of business and that’s what we need to do to keep our intensity up and prepare us for later on.”
The coach said she saw improvements in her team Tuesday, but they still haven’t quite reached their potential yet.
“We play huge tournaments for a reason, to get to a certain level, and we expect to carry over on game nights,” Faussett said. “Last home game we had I wasn’t pleased with our performance. I didn’t feel like we played up to our potential and tonight was a different story.”
Senior defensive specialist Tori Bingham returned for her first home game since being involved in a vehicle accident on July 28. She received a loud, standing ovation from the crowd when the roster was announced before the game started.
“I was really grateful and that meant a lot to me,” Bingham said. “It was kind of hard to watch and not play, but it meant a lot to be back here.”
“Team Tori” T-shirts are available to fans at home games for $15. The proceeds go towards Bingham’s medical bills.