When the 2015 TAPPS 2A Volleyball Playoffs kick off on Thursday, the Lady Mustangs of Lutheran High will be in a much different place than they were a year ago. Last year, Lutheran finished with a 3-15 record and only 8 girls on the team en route to fourth place finish in the 5 team district.
This year though, Mustang volleyball has been reinvigorated. Seventeen girls make up the roster this year and a Junior Varsity team has been added along with a new coaching staff. With nine freshman on the team this year, early season struggles were to be expected.
The Lady Mustangs had their ups and downs in the non district part of the season but managed a 9-7 record. When district play started in late September though, that’s when the Lady Mustangs gained their stride. They reeled off 9 straight wins before falling to Castle Hills in the second to last district game. A win against CASA brought up a rematch with Castle Hills, with a district championship on the line. Lutheran fell in 5 tough sets, but still earned the second seed in district and the right to host a playoff game.
The Lady Mustangs are led by a pair of underclassmen. Sophomore Domonique Richardson leads the team with 173 kills and is second with 59 aces. Freshman Lila Williams is second in kills with 169 and a team leading 95 blocks. Sophomore Kim Moore has 85 kills to go along with 184 assists and a team high 72 aces. Freshman Emily Haase (181 assists) Rachel Arnold (98 digs, 39 aces) and Lilly Hall (72 kills) all have been key contributors. The senior leadership of Savannah Senger and Morgan McKinnerney have help guide this young team and their energy contagious.
Lutheran (18-14)will host Universal City First Baptist (15-11) in the first round (Bi-District) of the playoffs. The two teams played earlier in the season with the Lady Mustangs winning in five sets behind a 38 kill match by Lutheran. The game will start at 6 PM and be played at “The Barn”. The game will also be broadcast on the Mustang Network.
The Lady Mustangs’ turnaround from 3 wins to 18 wins is remarkable and for most teams, be quite satisfying. When the season is over, they can time to reflect and look back at how far they have come. For these Mustangs, they hope that reflection comes a couple weeks later!