West sweeps district rival Calhoun (video)
• Brooke Kirkpatrick 14 kills, 4 blocks, 9 digs
• Sarah Warner 11 kills
• Kate Klimist 7 kills, 4 blocks
• Michelle Rendon 24 digs
Honoring a winning tradition matters to Victoria West's Ellen Hermes.
Coming into this season, the Warriors graduated four seniors who helped them get to the regional semifinals last season.
Though the Warriors are a long way from the start of playoffs, Tuesday night they had to contend with district rival Calhoun.
The Warriors (4-0) prevailed over the Sandies (2-1) 25-16, 25-21, 25-21 to remain undefeated in district play.
"I'm just glad we got the win," Hermes said. "I know we have a big tradition to uphold. I'm just really proud of our team."
A three-year varsity starter, Hermes knew that beating Calhoun was important to contend for the team's fourth-straight District 30-4A championship later this season.
Hermes is one of seven seniors on the team. Warriors coach Sandra Longoria knows how much experience her seniors bring to the team.
"We have great leaders," Longoria said, explaining that her seniors "just understand the expectations, their teammates and being able to lead."
Kate Klimist was another senior on the team who understood the importance of Tuesday's win. A former All-District 30-4A member, she said she wanted the team to improve game by game.
"Every game in district is super important, and we all know that," Klimist said. "We want to win just as much as our coach. I mean, it's one of our biggest district games, so it was pretty exciting to get this win."
Longoria relied on playing more non-district games to help the team prepare for district play. Playing the Sandies was just a step to get to their goal - being district champions.
"Calhoun has risen. They've gotten better, and so they're more of our competition now," Longoria said. "We just have to work on being consistent every day and just do the things that got us here. We talk about keeping the intensity - doing all the little things that get us the wins we get."
Sandies coach Virginia Parsons knew Tuesday's game would not be an easy one, but the loss is already forgotten.
"We're looking at Calallen now," Parsons said. "We're going to be over this game and on to the next one. The ball didn't fall our way, and we kind of played sloppy toward the end. We just got to clean it up."
Though losing their undefeated district record to West was tough to swallow, Parsons knew the Warriors were not the average team.
"They won district," Parsons said. "They're a good team. It's the first round, but every game is important."
Both Klimist and Hermes enjoyed the victory, but Wednesday will be another day to prepare for yet another district game.
"What happens in practice just reflects on the court," Klimist said. "We work hard; we play hard."