BURLESON — The Glen Rose Lady Tigers punched their ticket to the regional semifinals Tuesday night with a decisive 25-13, 25-9, 25-16 volleyball victory over District 7-4A champion Springtown at Burleson High School.
With the win, the second-ranked Lady Tigers improved to 46-1 overall and they also earned a 1 p.m. meeting Friday with Andrews (17-4) at The Coliseum at Western Texas College in Snyder. The winner will play the winner of Midlothian Heritage (winner over Graham Tuesday) and Bushland (winner over Seminole Tuesday), who will square off at 3 p.m. Friday at The Coliseum.
“We seem to fight our way to regionals, and I feel like this team will go into the tournament more experienced and settled than any of the last four years,” Glen Rose volleyball coach Sandy Langford said.
The Lady Mustangs earned a berth into the regional semifinals with 25-23, 25-22, 25-18 victory over Levelland Tuesday night. Andrews also posted wins over San Elizario (3-0) and Denver City (3-1) earlier in the playoffs.
In addition to Springtown, the Lady Tigers beat Benbrook (3-0) and Brownwood (3-0) in the first two rounds of the playoffs.
“We are ready, and the girls are healthy and focused, and they know what it is going to take from here on out,” Langford said.
Glen Rose has reached the regional quarterfinals four years in a row. In 2014, they fell to Brock 3-2 in the regional final, while in 2015 they were eliminated by Farmersville in the regional semifinals, and last year, they lost to Bushland in the regional final.
In the win over the Lady Porcupines Tuesday night, the Lady Tigers set the tone early in the first set by jumping out to a 15-1 lead behind four kills each from Logan Smith and Libby Hinton, and solid serving from Bryanna Lytle.
“We have been really working on our start and getting the first 15 points,” Langford said. “It has paid off so far in the three rounds in getting that quick lead.”
The Lady Tigers cruised to the 25-16 win in the first set, and the momentum carried over into the second set when they built a commanding 7-1 lead behind the serving of Emma Bozarth and Lytle. Senior Ally Andress had four of her seven kills in the 25-9 win in Set 2.
Springtown put up more of a fight in the third set, despite leading just once early in the set. Leading 14-11, the Lady Tigers got a kill from Lytle and then she served the next seven points to put the set well out of reach at 22-11 before eventually winning 25-16.
Smith led the Lady Tigers with 17 kills while Hinton and Andress added nine and seven kills, respectively, and Laiken McAnear added six kills. Hinton also had four blocks and one of the Lady Tigers’ eight service aces. Lytle tallied five kills and four service aces. Bozarth led Glen Rose with 22 assists, while Mallory Rogers had 14.
As a team, the Lady Tigers had a hitting percentage of .417, and they also had eight blocks.