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Barstow swept by Burroughs
BARSTOW • A tough Burroughs volleyball team came to town on Tuesday night and swept Barstow, 3-0.
The Lady Burros are having a good season, with this latest win giving them records of 13-6, 9-2. The Lady Aztecs are having a rougher year, though they have been improving steadily. At this point, it’s more of a mental game for Barstow, according to head coach Brooke Verrill.
“I’ve always said that volleyball is 95 percent mental. The mentally-stronger team will win,” she said after Tuesday’s match. “My girls have the fundamentals, they just need to play a better mental game.”
The first game was even for the first few points. Breanna Low had a couple of kills, and Heather Verrill had one, but once the Burros took control, they rode it to a 25-12 victory.
The second game featured longer volleys, one of which lasted a couple of minutes, but Burroughs came out on top by a 25-9 score. Some long hits and serves were costly for the Lady Aztecs.
“Burroughs’ defense is really strong, they took away some things we like to do,” said coach Verrill. “But with those bad serves it’s hard to get momentum going. Those long hits are a big thing; we gave them too many points.”
In the third game, Burroughs quickly jumped out to a 10-2 lead, but at that point, the home team made things interesting. Carla Randolph came up with a big kill in a key situation, and it turned the tide, starting a Barstow rally. Low contributed a kill, then stepped to the line and served up two aces, the second of which tied the score at 13-13. It stayed tight down the stretch, with the score tied again at 14, 15, 17 and 18 before the Burros put together a little rally of their own to win, 25-20.
Chelsea Phillips finished with 10 digs and three kills, while Heather Verrill had five kills and three blocks, and Tiare Alefaio six assists.
The Lady Aztecs have been doing better than recent seasons and coach Verrill is pleased that the players have been improving. The biggest roadblock is that Barstow goes up against Desert Sky League teams that boast nearly full rosters of girls who play club volleyball.
“Every girl on Burroughs plays club, and we have two,” she said. “We came back in that third game and that was a good thing, but we gave away too many points. We had nine serving errors and 16 hitting errors; there’s the match right there. We have to play hard and smart.
“We did play for a good cause tonight, though.”
It was Play for the Cure Night at Barstow, recognizing the fight against breast cancer. Donations were collected and proceeds from the bake sale in the lobby were donated to the cause.
The Lady Aztecs (3-8, 1-6) have five matches left. They’re next at home, hosting Victor Valley on Thursday.