The Bushland Lady Falcons await their bronze medals after falling in five-sets to Vanderbilt Industrial in a Class 3A state semifinal at the Culwell Center in Garland on Thursday. Matt Smith/ For Press Pass Sports]
A promising start turned into stunning heartbreak for the No. 1-ranked Bushland Lady Falcons during a Class 3A state semifinal at the University Interscholastic League state volleyball tournament at the Curtis Culwell Center In Garland on Thursday.
Vanderbilt Industrial left the Lady Falcons in dismay, pulling out a five-set classic (12-25, 25-21, 25-22, 15-25, 15-13) as favored Bushland’s dominating season came to a bitter end.
The loss to the Cobras (37-11) ends Bushland’s season at 46-2, snapping a 40-game match win streak dating back to early August.
It was the Lady Falcons first time to drop a set not only in the postseason, but for the first time since beating Class 6A Tascosa in five-sets on Aug. 27.
The game came down to the final points in the fifth set. Vanderbilt had a 11-9 advantage, only to see the Lady Falcons come back to tie it, 11-11.
Industrial came back to a 14-12 advantage, and after a Bushland point, outside Hitter Kylaan Griffin knocked down the lethal kill for the game-winner sending the Cobras to Saturday’s state championship.
Griffin and setter Lauren Williams gave Bushland fits throughout the match. Williams set up Griffin for a game-high 27 kills, as the Cobras consistently put pressure on the Bushland front. Griffin was key on the defensive side, hitting the floor for 21 digs.
Willliams ended her stellar day with 22 assists, and three blocks.
Kinley Rudder had a strong showing for the Lady Falcons with 19 kills, followed by Addyson Tiffin, who ended a fantastic career 17 kills.
Tiffin was the only player on varsity from the Lady Falcons 2016 state title team.
Jaycee Adams finished with 25 digs, as senior Ansley Sims, the regional MVP, dished out 28 assists
Bushland came out fast, taking the first set 25-12,
Industrial didn’t back down, shocking the Lady Falcons by rallying to win the next two sets, 25-21, 25-22, leaving Bushland in unfamiliar territory.
Being an aggressive team as they are, Bushland battled back to win the fourth set 25-15, however, were unable to finish off the come-from-behind victory.
Industrial awaits the Van Alstyne-Lexington winner in the other Class 3A semifinal.
Class 3A state semifinals
Vanderbilt Industrial def. Bushland 12-25, 25-21, 25-22, 15-25, 15-13.
Records:Bushland 46-2; Vanderbilt Industrial 37-11.
Kills: Kinley Rudder 19; Addyson Tiffin 17.
Blocks: Hallie Conkin 3; Rudder 3.
Digs: Jaycee Adams 25; Berrylin Boydston 20.
Assists: Ansley Sims 28; Taryn Schultz 23.
Aces: Adams 5; Sims 3.
Kills: Kylaan Griffin 27; Lauren Williams 8.
Blocks: Williams 3; Maddison Stanush 3.
Digs: Allie Eschenburg 29; Griffin 21.
Assists: Williams 22; Eschenburg 7.
Aces: Eschenburg 1.