Lyford hangs on to pick up home win against Rio Hondo

LYFORD — Both Rio Hondo and Lyford entered Tuesdays non-district volleyball match looking for some momentum.

After a turbulent weekend at the Mission Tournament, Lyford did some growing up despite taking some tough losses.

Against Rio Hondo, the Lady Dogs showed that growth in a 25-21, 25-11, 20-25, 25-20 win and did not disappoint their folks on parents’ night.

“I saw some progress tonight; we had some rough spots, but the girls battled tough in the first two sets,” said Lyford coach Lisa Lancaster. “We took our foot of the gas in the third set, but it just takes one person to get it going again and that is what happened; we lost the third set but we were able to get some momentum for the fourth set.”

Lyford will now prepare for its district opener at Pharr Vanguard on Friday while Rio Hondo will take the court in the Hidalgo Tournament this weekend.

“The girls are starting to sacrifice themselves a little more. They are doing the extra things a bit more and are running down balls and doing their job,” Lancaster said.

Up 20-18 in the fourth set, Rio Hondo rallied and had Lyford on its toes. Lancaster called a timeout and delivered a message that helped fire up the Lady Dogs.

Senior Sarah Martinez got the message loud and clear, and helped seal the win for Lyford.

“Coach wanted us to keep going,” Martinez said. “We were tired and they (Rio Hondo) were tired, too. We didn’t want to go to a fifth set and we had to keep pushing even though we were tired.”

Martinez finished with a team high 16 digs in the win.

“Honestly, this win feels great. We had a rough weekend against some tough teams,” Martinez said. “We kept up with them and we played tough and I really believe we got better from it, and it showed tonight.”

Both middles, Kayleen May of Lyford and Rio Hondo’s Taylor Gomez, answered each other’s tips and blocks all night and put on quite the show with their long range and ability to block.

May finished with five kills and seven blocks.

“She (Kayleen) had a heck of a time pushing through those challenges and staying active,” Lancaster said. “It was fun to watch. They (May and Gomez) both played great and Kayleen is starting to get more comfortable playing in the front row. She has taken the roll very well.”