Two games into its playoff run, Calvary is picking up steam.
The Lady Lions posted a 25-16, 25-12, 25-10 sweep of Dallas Covenant in the area round of the TAPPS Class 2A playoffs at First Baptist Church of Denton on Saturday night.
Cory Grant, Madeline Mayer and Anna Hollingshead were the figureheads of the Lady Lions’ dominance, with each putting their own stamp on a set.
“I think the fact that we have three hitters is big,” Calvary head coach Jennifer Bramlett said. “A lot of private school teams have one or two hitters, and we have three. Defensively, they’ve really impressed me. Anna is constantly making big plays. Cory is just consistent. We’ve got a lot of good things happening.”
Hollingshead kicked off the first set with two aces, testing Covenant’s defensive scheme immediately. Bramlett’s philosophy on serving was on display throughout the game, as Covenant struggled to develop offensive flow.
“I feel like serving is offense, and it was good to get aces,” Bramlett said. “You get great serves that throw them off their serve-receive, and they can’t run their offense.”
The Lady Lions roared their way to a 9-4 lead after a Mayer ace. Hollingshead posted back-to-back kills to make it 15-6 Calvary, and the Lady Lions held on from there.
The second set was tied at 7 before Mayer scored six kills in a 9-1 run to make it 16-8. Calvary finished the set with a 5-0 run and two more Mayer kills.
“We ran it up the middle against them and they couldn’t stop it,” Bramlett said. “I think their offense struggled because they are a pretty young team and their passes weren’t that great. Their two outside hitters were in the scouting report.”
Grant took over in the third set with six kills. Leading 9-7, Calvary rattled off an 11-2 run and then capped it with a 5-1 run.
“I knew they were a good team and we weren’t going to take them lightly, but I could tell my kids had it working,” Bramlett said.
Grant led the Lady Lions with nine kills, Mayer had eight kills and Peyton Stewart tallied 18 assists. Defensively, Grant led the way with 11 digs and Hollingshead had nine.
Calvary will continue its playoff journey with a matchup against Rockwall Heritage Christian on Tuesday in the regional round.
The Lady Lions will attempt to stay sharp with an exhibition against Pilot Point on Monday.
When asked how far she thinks her team can go, Bramlett was focused.
“As far as we possibly can,” Bramlett said. “I never count my chickens before they hatch. We have to take care of business. We play Pilot Point on Monday and Rockwall Heritage on Tuesday, so we have to take it one game at a time.”
PATRICK HAYSLIP can be reached at 940-566-6873. His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.