VOLLEYBALL: Southside outlasts South San in 5 games

Bobcats can’t hold late leads against stubborn Cardinals

AREA TEAMS INCLUDED: South San, Southside.



Five-game matches generally are something of a rarity in high school volleyball, but Sept. 1 was an exception.

Southside (9-10) was one of three that won marathon matches that day. East Central and Providence also prevailed in five games over La Vernia and Texas Military Institute, respectively.

For Southside, it was the second-consecutive, five-game match. The Cardinals learned from an Aug. 28 loss to Harlandale in order to win 25-20, 19-25, 18-25, 27-25, 15-12 at South San (9-10) with a late push.

“You can’t dwell on the past,” Southside senior Briana Martinez said, referring to Game 5. “As Coach (Rose Ann Soto) put it, you have to start over now. We came in ready to fight and we weren’t going to give up, no matter how (tough) it was.”

South San had a 2-1 lead in the match. The Bobcats also led 23-20 in Game 4 and 11-7 in Game 5 before the Cardinals rallied. Martinez and Tyler Bolton broke a 25-25 tie with kills in the fourth set. Southside setter Alyssa Gallardo scored match point with a clever tip that found open court.

“We came through as a team,” Martinez said. “We had many mistakes, but we were able to finish this. I feel like we played very well. It was probably our best match this year.”

The shot was reminiscent of a tip from Bobcats setter Erica Jimenez that started a winning three-point run in Game 3. A soft kill from Arantxa Saucedo and a block from Celeste Alfaro finished the game.

“The girls have to continue to work hard and keep wanting it more,” South San coach Evelyn Pineda said. “We have to execute on our serve-receives.”

Southside, which dealt with injuries earlier in the season, now is at full strength.

“I am senior-heavy,” the Southside coach said. “I have seven seniors and they want to get back to the playoffs. They’re determined to pick up where they left off and go even further than last year.”



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