FARMINGTON – The Farmington volleyball team needed a win in its final match of the regular season and got it, besting Gallup 25-13, 25-17, 24-26, 25-13 Thursday night at Scorpion Gym.
The Lady Scorps (11-9, 5-3 District 1-5A) jumped to a 10-3 lead in the first set and built their advantage to as much as 20-9 behind solid serving, passing and hitting.
“Finding rhythm is really important for us,” Farmington head coach Dan Hickman said. “We’ve had some trouble on our back row, but Krystalynn Arviso and Lexi Jackson really stepped up in that first game and kind of set the tone. They gave the front row the ability to do what they needed to do. The first game was really important for us.”
The Lady Scorps allowed Gallup (5-15, 2-6) to hang around to start the second set.
During that set, Farmington had some communication issues and let the ball drop between the Lady Scorps on a few separate occasions to give easy points to the Lady Bengals. Although Farmington outscored Gallup 15-9 to close out the set, the miscues early on were a sign of things to come in the third.
Gallup took its first lead of the match at 9-8 in the third and built a 14-11 lead, but Farmington went on a 10-2 run to take a 21-16 lead.
But then the Lady Scorps began to falter, eventually losing the close set.
“Loss of confidence, and you could see it,” Hickman said of Farmington’s struggles in the third set. “They’ve got the skills and ability, but sometimes they just don’t quite believe in themselves. We thought we might be able to get it done in three (sets), but they started to have some doubts. Those doubts started to permeate a little bit, and that’s when they got in trouble.”
Despite its struggles to end the third, Farmington bounced back in the fourth, jumping out to a 10-3 lead and never looking back.
Farmington will be off until next week when it begins play in the district tournament. The team’s opponent is yet to be determined.
Miyamura 3, Aztec 0
Aztec couldn’t maintain momentum and saw its regular season come to an end with a 25-17, 25-12, 25-21 loss to Miyamura on senior night Thursday at Lillywhite Gym in Aztec.
“We tried to get in a rhythm, but couldn’t get anything going,” Aztec head coach Anna Strauss said. “It’s such an emotional game to begin with, and the stars weren’t aligned for us.”
Strauss said the Lady Panthers played in spurts. They’d put together a good run, but couldn’t sustain the strong play for a full set.
Aztec will be back in action Monday when the Lady Tigers head to Gallup to take on the Lady Bengals (5-15, 2-6) in the first game of the district tournament.
“It’s a new season. It starts over on Monday,” Strauss said. “We need to find that confidence again. The last two games before tonight, we’ve been pretty energized and excited. They were having fun out there, and we need to get back to that.”
Navajo Prep 3, Rehoboth Christian 0
Navajo Prep (14-1, 7-0 District 1-3A) played with tenacity and swept Rehoboth Christian (12-8, 3-5) 25-18, 25-22, 25-13 Thursday night at the Eagles Nest.
“We just had that great mentality of not giving up,” Prep head coach Rainy Crisp said. “It was a very close second game, and we came from behind to win. We were down 10-2, but kept fighting though our errors.”
Prep, which already had secured the No. 1 seed in its district tournament, will wrap up its regular season today at Newcomb (13-4, 3-4).
“We just have to continue to have the same mentality. We know what we're up against at the state level, and that’s what we’re preparing for,” Crisp said. “The girls are treating every game like it could be our last, and the girls are going in and playing hard. We want to carry that over through the district tournament and into the state tournament.”
Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-464-4648.