PV senior served for 20 straight points in tournament semifinal
FARMINGTON — Ron Becker felt more like a spectator than a coach on Saturday as he watched Bebe Jaquez during the Piedra Vista Volleyball Invitational.
In a match against Kirtland Central, the Piedra Vista senior served for 20 straight points, a new school record for PV. Becker said he'd never seen anything like it at the varsity level.
"I didn't wanna jinx her so I didn't say anything while it was happening, but it was awesome watching it," the coach said. "When she was at 17, I kept thinking in the back of my brain, 'This is unheard of.' Especially to do it while jump serving."
An outside hitter, Jaquez said she's used to jumping, and feels like she has more ball control when she jump serves as opposed to serving from a set position on the floor.
Jaquez said she wasn't even aware of the streak until she looked up at the scoreboard when it read 15-0. When the Lady Broncos finally registered their first point of the match to make it 21-1, it was because a PV player blocked a ball out of bounds, not because Jaquez missed the serve.
To Becker, that may have been the most amazing part of Jaquez's record-breaking streak.
"We sided out at the 21st point. It could have been more. Who knows how long that could have gone on," Becker said. "I think it's her consistency and her rhythm and timing that makes her capable of a really good run like that."
Jaquez is PV's only team captain this season. Bestowing the captain title has proven to be tricky for Becker, who said he has seen it go to players' heads in the past. But that hasn't been the case for Jaquez, who embraces the responsibilities that come with the honor.
The humble captain deflected praise for her incredible serving streak by crediting teammates.
"It wasn't mainly me, it was my teammates helping me get those aces," Jaquez said. "My teammates were a big part of it, too."
It's that kind of attitude that makes Becker content with his decision to name Jaquez his sole team captain. He said he believes there's more to being a captain than just barking out orders, and he thinks Jaquez understands that.
"One of the things I nag my captains about is, I don't want you to go out and think you can tell people what to do and yell at other players. I want you to go out and be a leader," Becker said. "Make things happen on that court, and that'll inspire your teammates to do the same, and she absolutely has that ability."
Jaquez doesn't take her responsibilities as a leader lightly.
"I think there's a lot of my teammates that are capable of being the captain," Jaquez said. "I'm just honored that (Becker) chose me, so I'm putting a lot of work into being a leader."
The Lady Panthers moved past KC and into the final of their home Invite, where they swept Ganado, Ariz., 25-6, 25-10, 26-24 to win it all for the first time in three years. After registering 4 kills, 4 aces and 10 digs to go along with the dominant serving against the Lady Broncos, Jaquez shined in the championship match with 16 kills, 14 digs and 3 aces.
PV is now 4-0 and looks like a formidable opponent for any of the Class 6A teams on the Lady Panthers' schedule.
To make sure his team wouldn't have a deer-in-the-headlights look during the district schedule, Becker inserted PV in various tournaments and scrimmages over the summer, where the Lady Panthers earned wins against teams like Cibola and Volcano Vista.
Not only has the busy summer brought PV closer as a team and contributed to its undefeated start, but according to Jaquez, it's given the girls confidence that they can make a run at the 6A district title.
"We all kind of had this mindset going into 6A that, 'Oh, we can at least hang in there,'" Jaquez said. "But now we know what we're capable of, and we think we can actually win a lot."
Jake Newby covers sports for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4577.
A closer look: Bebe Jaquez
1. Favorite team?
2. Favorite athlete?
3. Favorite food?
4. Favorite movie?
5. Favorite subject in school?
6. Least favorite subject?
7. Biggest fear?
"Losing someone close to me."
8. Do you play any other sports?
"Yes, I run track."
9. What is the first thing you would do with $1 million?
"I'd buy my mom a new house."
10. Do you have any pre-game rituals?
"Me and my teammate (Elli) Wright eat caramels before each game."