Bees get key 7-3A road win
It wasn't as pretty as she would have liked, but veteran Stephenville (19-16, 2-0) head coach Fran Metzger has learned to take a key district win any way she can get.
And no doubt, Tuesday's 25-15, 23-25, 25-22, 25-22 road win at co-7-3A frontrunner Glen Rose (17-14, 1-1) was big.
"It's huge to win here," said Metzger. "It puts in great position if we can take care of business the rest of district."
Dani Huckabee's seven aces and a host of tips were enough to save the Honeybees on a night Metzger admits they were far from their best.
"They play pretty good defense, but we were just out of sync," she said. "We couldn't seem to get any momentum going."
Unless Huckabee was serving, which was when the Bees seemed in complete control. The senior middle blocker served seven straight points - three of them aces - to turn the first set from a 15-13 nail biter to a rout. She served the last two points - including an ace for the win - of the key third-set victory that put the Bees ahead in the match to stay, then fired consecutive points to start the decisive fourth game.
"That saved us," Metzger said of Huckabee's aces. "It really did, because we were letting them hang around."
Errors and penalties delayed the Stephenville win, but couldn't deny it. Glen Rose senior utility standout Reilly Junge and junior middle blocker Kayla Goebel also contributed heavily to the Bees' struggles. Junge served two aces as part of a 3-0 Glen Rose lead when the Lady Tigers won the second set. They also took advantage of six Honeybee errors and a penalty after Stephenville led the set 17-13.
But Stephenville regathered, scoring four straight points out of a timeout to grab a 21-18 third set lead, which they eventually won with a Brooke Harvick kill, a Chrislyn Wells tip and a Huckabee ace after it was even at 22-22.
The fourth set was also tight, with Glen Rose leading 21-20 until Harvick tipped home the tying point and a Kaiser kill gave the Bees a 22-21 edge. Glen Rose evened it up once more on a block, but followed that with a serve into the net before a Kaiser kill and a Billings block ended the match.
Kaiser hit 30 percent and had a team best 12 kills and 19 digs. Harvick registered 11 kills, Huckabee and Stokes each had nine and Natalie Tiner added eight. Wells and Tiara Green set up the damage with 23 assists and 16, respectively.
The defense was led by Stokes and Kaiser with 19 digs each while Wells added 10 for Stephenville, which visits Hillsboro in another 7-3A bout at 4:30 p.m. Friday.
Follow Brad Keith on Twitter @etsports