WALKER -- Scotlandville used a furious rally to help put away Walker in three sets Thursday night.
With the Lady Cats a point away from tying the match at 1-1, the Hornets scored seven straight points to erase a five-point hole and pick up the second set. After a hard-fought first set and the emotional swing of the second, Walker faced an uphill battle and couldn’t salvage a set.
“I was impressed with my girls,” Scotlandville coach Gwen Jackson said. “I was impressed with Walker as well, but I was impressed with mine because it has been a little rocky road. But they pulled it together and came (out with) a win. We got it.”
The swing in emotion was a tough pill for the Lady Cats to swallow, especially given how well Walker played in bursts.
“I think they came in tight," Walker coach Kaylee Guidry said. "It was senior night, so the emotions were higher, and they were a lot (more) tense. We had to tell them be calm and breathe, relax. It’s just a game and you’re playing our game. I think we really struggled with that tonight ... I think they settled at times, they just didn’t bring it to fruition at the end.”
“I think we went in overly confident,” Walker senior Peyton Gautreaux said. “We said we were going to get it because it was senior night, it was our game. When it got close, we kind of freaked out and weren’t on our A-game.”
Lillie Waguespack led Walker with six kills and five blocks, while Emmani Jackson led Scotlandville with four kills.
The teams were neck-and-neck from the start of the first set and remained close together, with the Lady Cats eventually breaking away to a 17-14 lead. Some misplays on the Walker side allowed Scotlandville to battle back, tie the set and take a 21-20 lead. Scotlandville came within a point of picking up the set victory at 24-22 and allowed Walked to tie the set at 24. A botched serve and a mis-hit gave the Hornets a tight 26-24 victory.
Walker took command of the second set, racing out to a 9-3 lead before a Scotlandville timeout. The Hornets feigned a comeback, but after a timeout, the Lady Cats surged back ahead to a commanding 20-10 lead.
“We had to make sure that we not only stopped their run but also covered the net, and then covered the middle because they were consistently putting the ball in the middle,” Jackson said.
“We had to get back on the same strategy because we were all over the place,” Scotlandville's Shakeira Monroe added. “Once we got back on the same page and knew what we needed to fix, that was our motivation to win the game.”
The Hornets were able to score five straight from that point and forced a few Lady Cat errors to work their way back into the set. The Lady Cats were a point away from leveling the match at 1-1 at 24-14 but were unable to get that point, allowing Scotlandville to complete an improbable comeback.
The Lady Cats would not score again, and the Hornets took the second set 26-24.
“It’s a hard reality of volleyball,” Guidry said. “At any point, it could turn. That’s why every single point matters.”
“Once we get in a lead, we can continue to stay in it,” Gautreaux added. “But once we get out it, we just fall.”
The Hornets were a little late the party in the third set, but once Scotlandville got hot, it quickly erased Walker’s lead and tied the set at 10. A couple of Lady Cat miscues gave Scotlandville a 14-11 lead. Walker eventually caught back up the visitors, but Scotlandville immediately grabbed hold of the lead, eventually completing the sweep with a 25-20 victory.
“We played great tonight,” Monroe said. “We were all on the same page, so we did great.”