Perfect set up

Messiah Hernandez, from left, sets a ball for an incoming Kaylie Skinner.

The Rockport-Fulton High School (RFHS) Lady Pirate volleyball team finished the first half of district play with a perfect 6-0 record after defeating the Sinton Lady Pirates in four sets Friday, Oct. 1 at home.

RFHS dropped set one to Miller 25-17, but won the next three sets 25-9, 25-11, and 25-11 for the comeback victory.

RFHS sits atop district 26-4A standings with a 6-0 record. Calhoun (5-1) and Sinton (4-2) make up second and third place.

The win over Sinton puts RFHS in control of its own destiny as it pertains to a district championship.

RFHS senior middle blocker Kaylee Howell said getting a win over Sinton means more.

“Taking a control dub over Sinton has brought us to the realization of how good we can be,” said Howell. “I think we all knew before we were playing down to the level of our competition, but when we decided to play Rockport volleyball, we are a lot better.

“This was the click and the light for everyone believing we can go far, because we know how good we are when we come together as a team and everyone plays their individual roles.”

RFHS Head Coach Mark Jeffery said the large home crowd, while a shock for the team at first, played a big part in the team turning the energy around in the final three sets.

“It may have hurt as a bit in the first set because we hadn’t seen that yet, but once they got used to it I think it definitely helped us out,” said Jeffery.

In set one, RFHS lost 25-17. Jeffery said the loss was more mental than anything.

Senior outside hitter Lauren Moore said Jeffery reminding the team to be mentally tough got them back into the game.

“He always reminds us to keep a positive attitude even if we lose a set,” said Moore. “It shouldn’t be a big deal to us and we can always come back.”

RFHS came back in a big way through sets two and four, pulling away from Sinton about midway through each remaining set to seal the victory.

RFHS constantly pressured Sinton offensively and the maroon Lady Pirate were unable to keep up with the barrage of attacks from Howell, Moore, and Kiley Kopp.

Howell and Moore led RFHS offensively with 14 kills each. Kopp followed with 13.

Mikayla Molina led RFHS in assists with 25. Messiah Hernandez followed with 21.

Hernandez also finished with a team-high six aces.

Payton Martinez led RFHS defensively with 38 digs. Moore followed with 20.

Howell led RFHS in blocks with four. Moore, Kaylie Skinner, Alana Garcia, and Kopp finished with one block each.

RFHS played at Miller Tuesday, Oct. 5 and be on bye the rest of the week. Their next game will be 6 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 12 at Calhoun.

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