HIGH SCHOOL VOLLEYBALL: Odessa High wins third straight match with sweep over Crane - Odessa American: Oavarsity

HIGH SCHOOL VOLLEYBALL: Odessa High wins third straight match with sweep over Crane

By Tony Venegas tvenegas@oaoa.com, 432-333-7649 | Posted: Tuesday, September 10, 2019 9:10 pm

There’s no place like home for the Odessa High volleyball team.

Playing their first home match in a month, the Lady Bronchos sought to take care of business and keep building on recent success.

Odessa High did exactly that as it swept Crane in straight sets, 25-16, 25-13, 25-14, Tuesday at the OHS Fieldhouse.

The victory was the third in a row for the Lady Bronchos (12-12).

“It’s nice to be back home,” Odessa High head coach Victoria Smith said. “We’ve been on the road a lot the last few weeks so it was nice to be back and perform.”

The Lady Bronchos got on the right track by taking advantage of mistakes from Crane.

They got off to a slow start in the first set, trailing 6-3 early but managed to regroup and take a 14-12 lead before the first timeout by Crane.

As would be the theme, Odessa High was able to close sets strong and did so in the first set by going on an 11-4 run.

Crane (12-15) got off to a good start in the second set by taking an early 9-4 lead.

Odessa High, however, quickly closed the deficit by running off five straight points to even the set, with senior defensive specialist Gabrielle Jaquez serving during the run, which included two aces.

That scoring run sparked some momentum that the Lady Bronchos would not relinquish, closing out the set on a 16-4 run.

“We just came out with a lot of energy,” Jaquez said. “If we do that, the result is usually good and that’s what helps us a lot.”

The final set picked up from where the previous one had ended as Odessa High took advantage of mistakes from Crane to win by a comfortable margin.

Junior middle blocker Kheeauna Lide was among the standouts for the Lady Bronchos, finishing with five kills and five aces to go with four digs and an assisted block.

“I’ve just been focused on working on my blocking and hitting during practice,” Lide said. “I’ve just on worked on getting up to the net faster and was able to put that together during a game.”

Tuesday’s match was a tough matchup for Crane but head coach Terry White was able to take some positives for his team as the start of District 3-3A play draws closer.

“We were just trying to improve as a team,” White said. “We kind of had our minds on some other things not so much the scoreboard. We got some good blocks and hits and we had some other kids step up so that was encouraging to see.”

As for Odessa High, the team has two more nondistrict matches before opening District 2-6A action at Permian on Sept. 24. Smith hopes that her team can continue to grow and improve before that day comes.

“I think the girls sometimes surprise themselves with what they can do,” Smith said. “I hope that they can continue to do that so that they can learn how good they can be.”

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