Taylor wrapped up its regular season Monday, falling to Tri-Central 25-17, 25-23, 25-10. Hannah Mullinax had 12 service points for Taylor and Kim Seal had 10 points and five kills.
“I was impressed with my kids [Monday]. They came out and played hard and put themselves in a situation to win the first two sets and although it didn’t happen, they played hard and played smart, which is something we have been working on,” Taylor coach Denise Leicht said. “It was senior night and we have had good leadership this year. I just wish in terms of wins and losses we had more to show for it. We have improved over the past couple years.”
Eastern (17-11) enters the postseason on a three-game slide after claiming a Howard County Tournament championship two weekends ago.
“I felt like we had some momentum going,” Eastern coach Missy Mavrick said. “We were playing a lot of matches and had a break. It was nervous about it and I thought it hurt us. I think something that’s really been hurting us is our energy. We need to work on getting our energy back up. We need to clean up our block and be more aggressive with our hitting. It’s some little things. There were a lot of matches where we were right there and just let it slip through our fingertips. If we increase our energy level, those matches go our way.”
Eastern will open sectional play against a Tipton (20-11) squad that defeated the Comets in four sets early in the season, 25-17, 24-26, 25-16, 25-15.
“We had them early in the season and we were still pretty rusty,” Mavrick said. “I’m sure they’ve made a lot of adjustments and improvements. They have Kacie Juday, who is most definitely a gamer. She’s always aggressive in the front row and is a good athlete. We need to make sure we take her seriously and get blocks up against her. She really hurt us in the first game. They are very scrappy, but we need to do a better job of putting the ball down against them and expose some of their weaknesses. We didn’t do a good job of that the first time. Not letting balls hit the floor will help keep the momentum going our way. When we get a lead we need to keep it and finish sets and matches out.”