WEATHERFORD — The second-ranked Glen Rose Lady Tigers wrapped up what could be their most difficult stretch of the 2018 season with five consecutive matches with Class 5A and 6A teams Tuesday night with a 14-25, 17-25, 27-25, 20-25 loss to 6A power Weatherford.
In that stretch, the Lady Tigers (20-5) went 3-2 in posting wins of Mansfield Timberview, Richland and Arlington Lamar, while falling to Keller Timber Creek in five sets and Weatherford.
Four of the matches were played in the Arlington ISD Showcase last Friday and Saturday.
“Overall, we played well. Honestly, I felt like we should have went 4-0 but let that last set of the match against Timber Creek get the best of us,” said Glen Rose volleyball coach Sandy Langford of the team’s play in Arlington. “It wasn’t that the girls didn’t give everything they had because they did, but we were completely drained. Our tanks were on E.”
In all, the Lady Tigers have played seven matches against larger Texas classifications and are 5-2. The loses to Weatherford and Timber Creek were Glen Rose’s first back-to-back losses since Aug. 27, 2015.
“We have had a very tough preseason. We wanted to pack it in with great teams who played a faster game,” Langford said. “We wanted it more than a game here or there. We wanted it to create wear and tear on the girls not only physically but mentally. Our goal this season was not to go undefeated but to face tough teams and successful programs at the higher classifications and use them to help teach us to run a more constant and consistent offense.”
On Tuesday at Weatherford, the Lady Tigers came out tight and the Lady ‘Roos came out hot in the first two sets where Glen Rose committed 28 errors (18 in Set 1 and 11 in Set 2) and Weatherford was nearly flawless in winning 25-14, 25-17.
“We were intimidated by them in the first two sets and it totally showed,” Langford said. “Weatherford had zero hitting errors in those two sets and we made tons of unforced errors. Between sets, we discussed it wasn’t about a win or loss it was about how we would rise to the occasion or give up.”
In the third set, the Lady Tigers trailed 24-21, but they got three kills from Libby Hinton, who had 16 in the match, and one kill each from Logan Smith and Hanna Griffin to rally to win the set 27-25 to force Game 4.
“It was a test to see how we would battle in that third set and play our game,” Langford said. “I was proud of them, and I really felt had we not let them get a big run on us in the fourth game, we could have taken them to five.”
Smith, who had 15 kills in the match, had three kills early to give the Lady Tigers a 7-6 lead in the fourth set, but Weatherford scored the next nine points to lead 15-7, and Glen Rose couldn’t recover.
At one point, the Lady Tigers trailed 20-11, but they cut the lead to 24-20 thanks in part to two kills each by Smith and Bryanna Lytle before falling 25-20.
Griffin finished with seven kills in the match, including four in the third set, and Lytle also had seven kills with four coming in the fourth set.
At the Arlington ISD Showcase:
Glen Rose def. Timberview 25-10, 21-25, 25-21, 22-25, 15-13: Hinton recorded 19 kills and Smith added 18 kills and 12 digs. Lytle chipped in with eight kills and 20 digs, and Taylor Fellers recorded 25 assists, while Mallory Rogers and a double-double with 22 assists and 11 digs.
Glen Rose def. Lamar 25-23, 18-25, 19-25, 25-23, 15-9: Smith had a monster match with 24 kills, 24 digs and two service aces in the win over the 6A Vikings. Lytle had 11 kills and 16 digs, while Rogers had a double-double with 33 assists and 10 digs, and Fellers also had a double-double with 19 assists and 14 digs. Hinton finished with 16 kills.
Glen Rose def. Richland 25-19, 25-19, 25-20: Smith, who was named to the Arlington ISD All-Tournament team, recorded another double-double with 12 kills and 25 digs. Hinton also finished with 12 kills, and Rogers had a team-best 19 assists.
Timber Creek def. Glen Rose 19-25, 25-23, 25-22, 25-21: In the Lady Tigers’ first loss in the contiguous U.S. this season, Smith recorded another double-double with 17 kills and 19 digs, while Hinton had 18 kills and four blocks. Maddie Mooney tallied 16 digs, while Rogers had 23 assists and 13 digs. Lytle added 19 digs and six kills. Alexis Mims and Griffin also had four blocks each.
The Lady Tigers are back in action Friday when they travel to Brock. JV is set for 4:30 p.m. and the varsity will immediately follow.