For Burleson's state-ranked volleyball team Tuesday night's District 8-4A game at Centennial was just another night at the office.
The Lady Elks downed the Lady Spartans, 25-21, 25-6, 25-15, to remain undefeated in district play and perfect in four meetings with Centennial.
“We came over here and took care of business,” Burleson coach Aubrey Short said. “We started off slow but found a way to win. Centennial put a fight, it didn't help that we had 20 errors in the first game.”
The Lady Elks (33-2), the No. 2 team in Class 4A according to the Texas Girls Coaches Association poll, came in the heels of losing their first set in 8-4A play to Cleburne last Friday.
“I think losing that set showed us that we need to take care of business each night,” Short said. “It reinterates that fact that we have to find a way to minimize our mistakes.”
Burleson played at Crowley Friday night in a match that ended after press time. The Lady Elks last four matches are against the bottom four teams in 8-4A. Burleson hosts Everman Tuesday and Waco University Oct. 25. The Lady Elks play at Waco Oct. 29.
“We might not have a tough schedule left, but that doesn't mean we aren't working hard,” Short said.
The loss moved Centennial (20-15, 6-4) into a tie for third-place in 8-4A with Joshua. Centennial hosted second-place Cleburne Friday in a match that ended after press time. After Friday, the Lady Spartans schedules eases up as they play Tuesday at Crowley, at Everman Oct. 25 and host Waco University Oct. 29.
“I told the players after the match that you can't hang your heads about what happened,” Centennial coach Whitney Woody. “They played better and now they know its in them and in Game 1 they had a chance to see what they are capable of doing. They just have to pull that out every single time.”
Things were nip-and-tuck in the opening set Centennial built a 9-5 lead and extended it to 13-10. Burleson rallied back to take 14-13 lead. Centeninal led 16-15 but Burleson took a 22-20 lead on a service error and scored the next three points to win the sets.
The second set was all Burleson as Centennial burned timeouts at 5-1 and 11-3 in hopes of slowing down the Lady Elks. Behind the serving of libero Leecia DePaula, Burleson reeled off eight points to push the score to 22-4. Centennial scored twice before Holly Milam added points on a tip and and an ace to give the Lady Elks a 2-0 lead.
The Lady Spartans bounced back in the third set, keeping things tight early. Centennial trailed 13-10 before the Lady Elks went on a 12-5 run to win the set and the match. Milam had three kills and block in the final eight points.
“We tried out a couple of different game plans but their middles Holly (Milam) and Mackenzie (Hailey) are hard to stop,” Short said. “They are two extremely talented middles with an extremely talented setter and that's a recipe for wins. They are a solid team and we wish them tons of luck in the playoffs.”