By Thomas Garcia
QCS Senior Writer
The Logan Lady Longhorns and San Jon Lady Coyotes capped strong seasons with appearances in the state volleyball tournament in Rio Rancho.
The (15-8) (2-3) Lady Longhorns split four sets but eventually fell to the Fort Sumner Vixens 15-9 in the quarter-finals, ending their first 1A state volleyball appearance since 2004.
The quarterfinals match with the Vixens was the girls’ best game of the season, said Robert Young, Lady Longhorns head coach.
Young said the Lady Vixens jumped out early, winning the first set 25-13. He said he was concerned with the Longhorn girls’ response after that set.
‘I think we had started off not ready to play and nervous about the stage we were playing on,” said Becca Trujillo, Lady Longhorns senior.
Young said the girls showed tremendous heart by taking the second set 25-19.
Trujillo said the matches between Fort Sumner and Logan have always been high-energy with a lot of emotion on the court. She said the Lady Longhorns knew they could win sets against the Vixens and played with heart, leaving it all out on the court.
Young said he is proud of the girls’ tournament play and thinks the girls had an outstanding season. He said the Lady Longhorns fought hard and improved as the season progressed, playing their best matches as they moved into district and state competition.
Young, who is completing his second year as head coach, said the Lady Longhorns improved as they took up the system and learned new techniques. He said he is very excited about his returning players. He also said next year’s Longhorn squad will have a great core group as players step into roles left open by the seniors.
The Lady Longhorns advanced out of pool play with a second-seed and advanced to play the Lady Vixens by beating the Tse’ Yi’ Gai Dine Warriors 3-0 in the first round of 12.
The Lady Vixens went on to defeat Tatum for the 1A state championship.
Lady Longhorns vs Tse’ Yi’ Gai set scores: 25-18, 25-21, 25-13
Lady Longhorns vs Vixens set scores: 25-13, 19-25, 25-21, 23-25, 15-9
In their first pool-play outing in a Class B state tournament, the San Jon Lady Coyotes fought their way to a semifinals match with the Carrizozo Lady Grizzlies.
The (13-8) (6-2) Lady Coyotes lost their bout with the Lady Grizzlies in three sets, having beaten the Mosquero Lady Pirates in five sets the day before.
The Lady Grizzlies fell to the Elida Tigers 3-2 in the championship game.
Lady Coyotes vs Lady Pirates set scores: 12-25, 25-14, 25-20, 23-25, 15-17
Lady Coyotes vs Lady Grizzlies set scores 14-25, 21-25, 13-25