After holding on to win the first game, the Cougar varsity dropped two straight games to lose their match with the Bulldogs 1-2 (25-23, 20-25, 18-25). In the opening match, the young Cougar freshman won 2-0 (21-17, 21-18) and the JV squad did the same (21-10, 21-13).
Trailing 3-5 in the first game, the Lady Cougars scored six straight points to take a lead they would not give back. Erica Clemons served an ace during the run.
Grayson County extended its lead to eight points, 22-14, with senior libero Rachel Crawford serving, before the Bulldogs gained a sideout. John Hardin pulled to within 23-18, but Amanda Vuleta put her next serve into the net, setting up the Lady Cougars with its first game point.
However, the Lady Bulldogs earned a sideout, then scored four straight to pull to within a point, 24-23. But the Lady Cougars pulled it together and got the sideout to win the first game.
Grayson County jumped out to a 7-3 lead at the start of the second game but saw the Lady Bulldogs score four straight to tie it at 7-7. The Lady Cougars pulled back in front by as many as four, 11-7, but John Hardin took charge at that point. Still trailing 16-14, the Lady Bulldogs got a pair of aces from Paige McQuown and a kill by Vuleta in a 6-0 run that put them in front to stay.
Vuleta served a game point at 19-24, but put it into the net again, giving the Cougars another opportunity. But when Andrea Pauley put a kill attempt into the net, it gave the visitors the win and tied the match at a game apiece.
In the deciding match, the Lady Cougars led three times by a single point, the last time coming at 7-6. John Hardin then scored four straight and never trailed again. McQuown served five straight points, including an ace, to end the matchßºß.
Grayson County fell behind 2-4 in the early going, but five straight points with Caitlyn Sloan serving gave them the lead for good.
Leading 9-6, Felicia Higdon served nine straight points, including three straight aces, to put the Lady Cougars in complete charge, 18-6. Amber Smith and Taylor Poteet both had kills during the run.
The second game was closer until Sloan took over the serve with her team in front 10-8. Two John Hardin hitting errors and two aces by Sloan allowed the Lady Cougars to score six straight and the Lady Bulldogs were never closer than four points the rest of the way.
Higdon served out the match with three straight points, including two more aces, to give the Cougars the win.
The freshman girls made their debut a successful one, winning the first game 21-17, then coming from behind in the second game to take the match.
Trailing 6-9, Corey Mann took over the serve and got immediate help from Smith who had a kill on the first point to start a 7-0 run that put Grayson County in charge, 13-9. Mann had two aces in the run.
John Hardin came back to tie the score at 17-17, but Jessika Young had a kill for a rally point, then served two straight points to bring it to match point, 20-17. But when Young served long, the Bulldogs were still alive.
However, Meghan Warsaw’s kill attempt went into the net for the Bulldogs, and the Lady Cougars won the rally point to take the match.