The Starkville High School volleyball team looked like it was in a good position to advance.
The Lady Yellowjackets took the first set, but Center Hill regained momentum to take the next three sets and won a 3-1 decision in the Division II playoffs Saturday in the Beehive.
SHS opened the match with a 25-19 win. The Lady Mustangs took the second set 25-5 and shifted the momentum their way.
"We lost focus," SHS head coach Lauren Love said. "They are a great team and you can't lose focus on a single point, let alone a run of points against a team like that. We were making mental errors, serving errors and and net calls. We didn't take care of our side."
The Lady Jackets put up a fight in the third set, but Center Hill managed to pull out a 25-21 victory.
"That didn't carry over into the other sets," Love said. "To make a turnaround like that shows the maturity of this team. We started playing to win. We weren't playing not to lose."
Center Hill brought a good defense into Starkville, and at times it was tough for the Lady Jackets to put the ball on the floor.
"They are a scrappy team," Love said. "In volleyball, scrappy is great. It's just hard to put volleyballs down on them."
In the fourth set, SHS found itself down 24-19.
"(I) called a timeout and talked about it," Love said. "We had to jump a little higher and get our rear ends down a little bit lower. We pulled together that composure and (got the) focus that we needed."
The Lady Jackets stormed back and got the score to 24-23. The Lady Mustangs hunkered down and took the next point and the match.
Khris Carr led SHS with 13 kills, two aces, nine digs and two block assists. April Reese had eight kills, nine digs, a solo block and an assist block.
Courtney Wilson ended the day with five kills and 18 digs. Vicky Vo had two aces and four digs.
Michaela Mills had two aces, two block assists and nine digs. Stacie Young had a solo block and five block assists. Jamiyah Covington had seven digs.
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