Lady Bulldogs start district

Posted 9/8/20

The North Zulch volleyball team traveled to Normangee Tuesday to officially begin their district slate after finishing their non-league season on a four-game winning streak. The Lady Bulldogs entered the matchup after a weeklong break from their Sept. 1 victory over Livingston in five sets.

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Lady Bulldogs start district

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The North Zulch volleyball team traveled to Normangee Tuesday to officially begin their district slate after finishing their non-league season on a four-game winning streak. The Lady Bulldogs entered the matchup after a weeklong break from their Sept. 1 victory over Livingston in five sets.

The matchup against Livingston was added to the non-district slate after Snook canceled their normally scheduled game with the Lady Bulldogs. North Zulch defeated Livingston by scores of 28-26, 25-21, 24-26, 22-25 and 15-8.

“I felt like we were on our way to winning in three sets, but (middle blocker Jordan Barrington) tweaked her ankle and I pulled her out because I wasn’t sure how severe it was at the time,” said head coach Melissa Padgett. “I carry a nine-player roster, so I don’t really have a backup middle blocker.”

Padgett moved some of her players around after the Barrington injury for the final two sets of the night.

“They struggled to put it all together (in the fourth set),” said Padgett. “But in the fifth set they put it all together and dominated.”

Barrington’s injury was not severe and she would have been ready for the team’s matchup Friday, but New Waverly canceled the contest at the last minute, unexpectedly ending North Zulch’s pre-district slate a game early.

“I wanted that last game,” said Padgett. “I wasn't happy about having the off night right before district.”

As one of the only 1A teams in a predominately 2A district, North Zulch is already aware of their postseason fate. Regardless of their district performance, they will qualify for the 1A playoffs.

“I do want to win those games,” said Padgett on district. “We want to win every game that we take the court to play. In the big scheme of things, those games really do not matter. We will be in the playoffs and see the teams we have to beat then. But we will be battle tested because (the district) is full of very good teams.”

The Lady Bulldogs compete in a district with Calvert, the only other 1A competitor, along with 2A opponents Normangee, Iola, Leon, Centerville, Mumford and Hearne.

“It would be great for us to pick up some wins against anyone in our district, really,” said Padgett. “We really need to up our blocking and improve unforced errors. We are still missing too many serves as far as I’m concerned.

“We are just a small team, so when it comes to setting up a block, just being in the right position will help. They are small but that does not mean we cannot get our hands in the right place and make hitters go around the block.”

North Zulch will continue their district schedule with a home matchup against Iola Friday. The game is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. at NZHS.

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