By Eric Butler: CNJ correspondent
TEXICO — After more than a week layoff, the Texico volleyball team got back to business on Saturday and took care of business by winning the District 6-2A championship at home.
Texico swept Santa Rosa 27-25, 25-7, 27-25 to host a regional round this weekend. The Lady Wolverines will play the loser of Saturday’s match between Dexter and Eunice next Friday at 5 p.m.
The effect of the time off for Texico (16-5) was most apparent in the first game as Santa Rosa (9-13) jumped out to a 14-9 lead. But a kill by Stephanie Bailey, followed by a double-block from Bailey and Erika Autrey, propelled the Wolverines to a 4-0 run to creep to within a point.
Texico, however, wouldn’t grab the first-game lead for good until a missed Lady Lions’ shot at 25 to 25 put the Wolverines at game point. That was secured for the home team after Lori Richardson slammed a kill that was initially dug out by a Santa Rosa defender. But the ball sailed long right back to Richardson, who put her second kill attempt away for the point.
In the second game, the serving of Texico sophomore Bryn Mayfield reigned supreme.
With her team already up 5-2, Mayfield served the Wolverines to 14 straight points. Six of those were thanks to aces by Mayfield and two more on Autrey kills after handcuffed Santa Rosa players were unable to handle serves accurately.
“It felt pretty good not to miss any. I just had to keep focus,” said Mayfield, also Texico’s setter. “I think it just got into their heads. They weren’t passing near as good as they were.”
The third game was like the first not only because of the identical score, but because the Lady Wolverines played from behind nearly the entire way — only to win out in the end.
Tied at 25-25 again, it was a Stephanie Bailey kill that put Texico at match point. The contest then ended when Santa Rosa was whistled for a double-hit on a set attempt.
“The first game, they (the Lady Lions) played real well — they served well. We weren’t passing and our hitting game wasn’t coming through,” Texico coach Mike Littlejohn said. “But our hitting went real good once we got the passes.”
Richardson led the Lady Wolverines with 17 kills while Bailey added nine and Autrey contributed with five kills and three blocks. Santa Rosa was paced by Dominica Sena’s six kills and three aces.
District 6-2A championship
Texico 3, Santa Rosa 0
Santa Rosa 25 7 25
Texico 27 25 27
Kills — Lori Richardson 17, Stephanie Bailey 10. Blocks — Erika Autrey 7. Digs — Faith Martin 9, S. Bailey 5, Richardson 5. Aces — S. Bailey 5, Brooke Bailey 2. Assists — Bryn Mayfield 30. Records — Santa Rosa 9-13, Texico 16-5.
District 3-1A championship
Fort Sumner 3, Elida 2
Elida 21 25 17 25 11
Fort Sumner 25 23 25 21 15
Fort Sumner leaders
Kills — Julie Wood 15, Lindsay Mansell 10, Alex Owens 9, Rachael Chavez 4, Carrie Cortese 4. Blocks — Mansell 3, Chavez 3, Wood 1, Owens 1. Digs — Mansell 7, Wood 6, Amber Sena 6, Kaylynn Johnson 4, Rita Herrera 3. Aces — Chavez 4, three tied with 2. Assists — Herrera 34, Owens 6. Records — Elida 9-8, Fort Sumner 17-7.