champs

NACOGDOCHES — The Huntsville Lady Hornets are in the playoffs for the first time since 2014, but they aren’t satisfied yet.

This mentality was on full display Thursday night at Nacogdoches High School, as the District 16-5A champions rallied to beat Marshall in four sets (23-25, 25-19, 25-17, 25-7) for a bi-district title.

The Lady Hornets have already completed their preseason goal, which was to win a district championship. Now, the question is how far can they go.

“It's big,” Huntsville head coach Cody Hassell said. “We set a goal, and that was to win district. But once you get to the playoffs ... is that the only thing we can do, or can we do more?

“We came out a little nervous and got down a little bit in the first set, but after that, I thought we took control for the rest of the match.”

Huntsville started off slow, dropping the first set as a result. However, it was all Lady Hornets after that.

Building momentum from taking a competitive third set, Huntsville dominated in the latter half of the match — winning the final two sets by a combined 29 points.

“We finally started swinging,” Hassell said when asked about the biggest difference after the first set. “I feel like in the first set we were scared to make errors and weren't trusting each other. We finally started trusting each other, finally started swinging and we were putting the ball down.”

Next up for Huntsville is an area-round showdown with Greenville. The match will be played at Ennis High School, with first serve scheduled for Monday at 6 p.m.

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