Lady Panthers stand with 16-8 record after dual event, Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament

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Bullard def. Mabank 25-23, 25-10, 25-23

The Bullard Lady Panther varsity volleyball team continued its trek through the 2017 season last week, as the team hosted a tri-matchup against the Mabank Lady Panthers and the Alba Golden Lady Panthers Tuesday, Aug. 39, inside Bullard High School's Panther Gym.

In the first matchup of the three-game event, the Bullard Lady Panthers faced off against the Mabank Lady Panthers. 

Bullard and Mabank began the match with strong intensity, as both teams fought to control the opening set's momentum early on. After trading points throughout the majority of the first set, Bullard created space on the scoreboard against Mabank, narrowly taking the set victory, 25-23.

In the second set of the match, the home team Bullard was able to use their overwhelming offensive production to attack the weaknesses of the Mabank defense, en route to Bullard claiming the set win, 25-10, putting them up 2-0 against Mabank.

Mabank and Bullard continued to battle for any advantage against their opponent in the third set, as both teams used every offensive and defensive scheme available in an attempt to grab the lead. However, the home team Bullard was able to withstand the attack of Mabank, taking a lead late in the contest and claiming victory in the matchup, 25-23, 25-10, 25-23.  

Bullard def. Alba Golden 25-11, 25-13, 27-25

In the second game of the affair, the Bullard Lady Panthers prowled their way back onto the home court for a bout against the Alba Golden Lady Panthers, the team that handed Bullard its first defeat in pool play at the recently-held Tyler ISD Tournament.

The Bullard squad apparently learned its lesson from the earlier loss to Alba Golden, as the home team came out strong in the first set of play, exposing the defense's weaknesses and using their offensive power to win the first set, 25-11.

In the second set of play, Bullard continued to find success offensively against Alba Golden, as the visiting team's defense was unable to slow the roll of Bullard's strong swats, as Bullard went up 2-0 with a second set win, 25-13.

Despite being down 2-0 against Bullard, Alba Golden roared back into contention during the third set of the matchup, attempting to put up a fight and avoid a sweep. As the two teams traded a barrage of offensive points, the home team Bullard found itself trailing early. However, Bullard was able to ride a strong offensive wave back into the ball game and fight its way back, claiming the third set in extra points, as well as the win in the matchup, 25-11, 25-13, 27-25.

Throughout the two games played by the Bullard Lady Panthers, senior defensive specialist Kailan Bellew was an anchor defensively for the team, amassing a total of 25 digs.

Other significant contributors for the Bullard Lady Panthers in the two games against Mabank and Alba Golden included senior setter Destinee Dixon, with 29 assists, 12 digs, and two blocks; sophomore outside hitter Sara McKeethan, with 16 digs, 15 kills, and seven aces; sophomore setter Kylie McKeethan, with 18 assists; freshman outside hitter/right side hitter Keili Richmond, with 14 digs, 10 kills, and two aces; senior outside hitter Kailey Consford, with 13 kills and four blocks; sophomore middle blocker Sarah Lewinski, with nine kills and three blocks; and junior middle blocker Ashlyn Meador, with eight kills and six blocks.

West Rusk def. Bullard 25-23, 26-24

After the matchups against the Alba Golden Lady Panthers and Mabank Lady Panthers, the Bullard Lady Panther varsity volleyball team traveled to compete in the Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament Thursday and Saturday, Aug. 31 and Sept. 1, at Brownsboro High School.

At the tournament event, the Bullard Lady Panthers were matched up in the same pool as the West Rusk Lady Raiders, Henderson Lady Lions, and Canton Lady Eagles.

In the first matchup in pool play at the Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament Thursday, the Bullard Lady Panthers battled against the West Rusk Lady Raiders.

Both teams battled hard to flummox their opponent and control the early momentum in the game, trading points back and forth. At the end of the set, it was the Lady Raiders who were able to come out on top, claiming the first set win, 25-23.

The Lady Panthers continued to scratch and claw with their strong offensive and defensive schemes in the second set, but so did the Lady Raiders. Despite Bullard's best efforts, West Rusk was able to pull ahead late, winning the second set in extra points, as well as the victory in the matchup, 25-23, 26-24.

Individual statistics for the Bullard Lady Panthers against the West Rusk Lady Raiders were unavailable at the time of press.

Bullard def. Henderson 25-16, 25-18

In the second matchup in pool play at the Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament Thursday, the Bullard Lady Panthers faced off against the Henderson Lady Lions.

The Lady Panthers were able to shake off the loss from the first pool play game and come into the second game with strong determination, using their powerful offensive power to claim the first set of the matchup, 25-16.

In the second set of play, Bullard continued to find success offensively, using big hits and swats to confound the Lady Lion defense, as Bullard took the second set and match victory against Henderson, 25-16, 25-18.

Individual statistics for the Bullard Lady Panthers against the Henderson Lady Lions were unavailable at the time of press.

Bullard def. Canton 22-25, 25-23, 25-15

In the third and final matchup in pool play at the Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament Thursday, the Bullard Lady Panthers faced off against the Canton Lady Eagles.

Bullard and Canton attacked each other with every weapon available to each teach during the first set of play. With the first set momentum traveling back and forth, it was the Lady Eagles who were able to soar past the Lady Panthers for the first set win, 25-22.

Not to be outdone, the Lady Panthers came roaring back into contention in the contest's second set, using their sharp offensive claws to take the lead late and hang on, defeating the Lady Eagles in the second set, 25-23.

In the third and decisive set, Bullard's strong offense was alive and well, as the team was able to overwhelm the Henderson defense en route to claiming the match in three sets, 22-25, 25-23, 25-15.

Individual statistics for the Bullard Lady Panthers against the Canton Lady Eagles were unavailable at the time of press.

Emory Rains def. Bullard 25-23, 25-20

After going 2-1 in pool play at the Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament, the Bullard Lady Panther varsity volleyball team was declared as the second-place team in their pool and advanced to the tournament's Gold Bracket.

In the first round of the Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament's Gold Bracket, the Bullard Lady Panthers squared off against the Emory Rains Lady Wildcats.

The Lady Panthers and the Lady Wildcats fought like jungle felines against each other, as the momentum of the contest was up for grabs. With both teams trading a barrage of hits and points, the Lady Wildcats clawed their way past the Lady Panthers, claiming the first set, 25-23.

Bullard worked hard to get back into the contest against Emory Rains, as both teams continued to attack each other on both sides of the ball. Although Bullard put forth a strong effort in the second set, Emory Rains was able to hold back their opponent, as the Lady Wildcats defeated the Lady Panthers in two sets, 25-23, 25-20.

Defensively, Bellew was able to provide strength for the Lady Panthers, contributing a total of 10 digs in the contest.

Other significant contributors for the Lady Panthers against the Lady Wildcats included Sara McKeethan, with eight digs, six kills, one ace, and one block; Kylie McKeethan, with eight assists; Dixon, with four assists and three digs; and Meador, with three kills, two aces, and one block.

Alba Golden def. Bullard 12-25, 27-29

In the second round of the Brownsboro Volleyball Tournament's Gold Bracket, the Bullard Lady Panthers squared off against the Alba Golden Lady Panthers.

Alba Golden began the contest with a powerful display of offensive abilities against Bullard, who was overwhelmed by the Alba Golden attack, as Alba Golden was the victor in the first set, 25-12, over Bullard.

In the second set, Bullard's strong abilities on both sides of the ball was evident, as the team attempted to bite their way back into contention against Alba Golden. As the set continued into extra points, the Bullard squad came up just a bit short, as Alaa Golden claimed the second set and matchup victory over Bullard, 25-12, 29-27.

Dixon was the defensive leader for Bullard against Alba Golden, providing the team with a total of 11 digs, as well as four assists.

Other significant contributors for Bullard against Alba Golden included Kylie McKeethan, with 11 assists; Bellew, with 10 digs; Sara McKeethan, with seven digs and six kills; Richmond, with seven digs and two kills; and Consford, with four kills.

With a record of 4-3 last week, the Bullard Lady Panther varsity volleyball team currently holds an overall record of 16-8 on the 2017 season.

Next week: Tuesday, Sept. 5 - Bullard at Grace Community; Friday, Sept. 8 - Bullard vs. Troup (TBA).

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