District 25’s fourth playoff spot was on the line Tuesday night in El Campo. The Wharton Lady Tigers gave the El Campo Ladybirds a scare early in the first set. But it was the Ladybirds who secured the fourth and final playoff spot with a three-set sweep over the Lady Tigers 12-25, 13-25, 8-25.
“We took a couple of losses this season that we shouldn’t have, but we wanted to come out and prove we’re a really good team. We’re really put together and we can do it if we really want it,” senior Skylar Bartosh said.
The Lady Tigers in the first set tied the game 9-9 forcing a timeout from the Ladybirds. El Campo regrouped and took control with junior Mackenzie Matlock serving six straight points.
Wharton answered with a kill from Marah Hoskins and an ace from Asijah Hammons, but El Campo got rolling and Ladybird Bryn Rod served the next 10 points to win the first set and help give them a lead in the second set.
Ladybird junior Jackie Nichols was active during the game with kills and blocks. During the Ladybirds 10-0 run between the first and second set, five points came from Nichols.
Had the Lady Tigers beat the El Campo, it would have forced a play-in game to determine the final playoff spot in district 25.
El Campo’s attention will now turn to the playoffs and they will face Bellville on Tuesday in Columbus.
The Ladybirds instead of playing a warm-up game before taking on Bellville, they opted for an extra practice to help them prepare.
“I think (our) strength is we will fight no matter what,” Bartosh said. “Even if we’re down or people are doubting us. We’ll fight until the end no matter what the outcome is.”
The good news for El Campo is it’s a quick turn around for Bellville.
Bellville and Caldwell played Friday night to determine who finished first. The Ladybirds will be well-rested for the first-round game.