The Sulphur Springs Lady Cats traveled to Paris Saturday, looking to open district play with a win. Sulphur Springs entered the game with a good bit of momentum, winning three of their last four games, including back-to-back straight set wins over Clarksville and Pioneer Tech & Arts Academy.
Sulphur Springs got off to a strong start in the opening set, controlling things for most of the way. Leading 24-21, it was senior Addisyn Wall who was able to give the Lady Cats the first set, with a big kill to put Sulphur Springs up 1-0.
Paris was out in front for most of the second set, though it was a close game. A block and an ace by Aaliyah Cheatum kept Sulphur Springs in it at 16-15, though they would go on to lose the set by a score of 26-24.
Early in the third set it was Wall who would once again give Sulphur Springs a 9-8 lead with an ace. Paris refused to let Sulphur Springs run away with it, despite the best efforts of Mary Taylor and Rainey Johnson who each had big kills.
With things all tied up at 14-14, it was once again Wall who gave the Lady Cats some momentum. Laney Hurst was able to put things away with an ace, and Sulphur Springs would take the second set by a final score of 25-20.
With their backs against the wall, Paris had their best set of the night in the fourth. Things were close in the early going, before Paris went on a huge run, taking the 25-14 and forcing a fifth and final set.
Despite momentum clearly going in Paris’ direction, Sulphur Springs refused to give up. They got out to a very hot start in the final set, taking a 14-6 lead thanks to a huge block from Trinity Jefferson.
Paris would score one more point, before Johnson put the game away with a kill. After a very tight battle, the Sulphur Springs Lady Cats were able to pull out the win, moving to 1-0 in district play and extending their winning streak to three games.
Wall once again led the way for Sulphur Springs, posting an impressive 19-kill outing. She also had five aces, in what was a great all-round game. Up next in kills was the freshman, Johnson, who had nine.
Setting things up was Jefferson, who had one of her best outings of the season. Jefferson had an impressive 39 assists, while also racking up six aces, four digs and a pair of blocks.
Defensively the team was led by a pair of seniors, Hurst and Kinley Friddle. Hurst had a team-high seven digs, while Friddle was right behind her with five.
The win was a huge one for Sulphur Springs, making them 1-0 in district play and boosting their overall record to 15-12. They will look to pick up a fourth consecutive victory and move to 2-0 in district play tonight, when they go up against Liberty-Eylau.
The Lady Leopards are in the exact opposite position of the Lady Cats, as they are 0-1 in district and coming off a pair of losses. WIth a total record of 14-13, they will try to bounce back from a 3-2 loss to Pittsburg.
The game is in Liberty-Eylau. Coverage of the game will be provided on Front Porch News later this week.