Titans win district opener over Floresville
By BY ALBERT ALVARADO - AALVARADO@VICAD.COM
Sept. 21, 2011 at 4:21 a.m.
Victoria East coach Jayme Pauley put her team through a short simulation during practice with the goal of preparing them for a long match.
The work paid off Tuesday as the Titans won a five-game district-opening match against Floresville at East High School.
"I've been trying to get them to work on intensity and not having a lot of time to do so," Pauley said.
Junior middle hitter Morgan Lienemann had 12 kills and senior outside hitter Katie Williams had 27 digs to help the Titans to a 25-19, 15-25, 25-19, 14-25 and 15-7 win.
The Titan improved to 18-14 on the season and 1-0 in District 30-4A.
Although a single regular-season win or loss rarely makes or breaks a season, the Titans know how important it is to start district play with a home win.
"If we didn't win, it would've put us down, so I'm glad we won the first one," Lienemann said. "It really puts us up."
The game was a back-and-fourth affair with Victoria East winning the odd numbered games and Floresville winning the even numbered games.
The Titans stuck to the pattern in the deciding game as they scored five of the first six points and although Floresville got within two points at 7-5, Lienemann and Amber Howell combined for five kills in Game 5, and Bianca Trevino provided the match-ending spike.
"We hit, and we talked, and it worked out," Lienemann said.
The Titans stumbled out of the gate in the opening game. Long shots and mistakes caught up to East and it spotted Floresville a 16-10 lead in Game 1.
But they turned it around quickly.
Before long, Lienemann came up with a spike and Williams provide a block and kill on consecutive points to give the Titans some confidence.
East went on a 8-1 run to tie Game 1 at 17-17, and although the Jaguars led 19-17, Williams and Howell scored five of the next seven Titans points to help East take Game 1 25-19.
Floresville stayed in the match with a strong run in Game 2.
After taking an 8-6 lead in Game 2, the Jaguars scored four straight points and forced Pauley to call a timeout.
After the timeout, Floresville had four straight aces to put the Titans in a 16-7 hole they did not recover from.
"Usually, we're a really strong defensive passing team, but tonight we had our let-ups on that," Pauley said. "That's where we fell short, and that's how we lost some of those points."
Williams finished with a team-high 13 kills, while Hannah Jaschke added 27 assists for the Titans.
Lienemann said the Titans can make some noise in district if they play the way they did in Games 1, 3 and 5.
"If we just stay up, I think we can win all of our games," Lienemann said.