There are few volleyball teams in the area, or the state, hotter than the Rogersville Lady Wildcats right now.
Since losing at home to Buffalo on Sept. 25, Rogersville has won 16 games in a row – including a payback victory on Wednesday night over the Lady Bison in the Class 3, District 10 championship game.
PHOTOS: BUFFALO VS. ROGERSVILLE
“Losing to them was a really tough night for us and a lot of stuff had just happened,” said Rogersville senior Austen McGranahan. “To come back and beat them and play for this… it was what drove us to here since that loss.”
Unlike their home loss to Buffalo in September, Rogersville was the aggressor in Wednesday’s district title matchup.
The Lady Wildcats never trailed in either set, winning 25-14, 25-16. With only three seniors on the roster and many players experiencing their first district title game, playing with the lead made all the difference for coach Tammy Miller’s Lady Wildcats.
“It was huge,” Miller said. “It let us play with confidence. When you have a young team and you can be in control like that, not that we can’t play from behind, but it takes a lot of the pressure off.”
A kill from sophomore Abby Groover in the first set put Rogersville ahead 12-8. Buffalo freshman Haley Gilpin answered with two kills of her to get the Lady Bison within 14-11.
But Rogersville scored eight of the next nine points, eventually taking the set on an ace from Leslie Clark.
Buffalo managed to stay a little closer in the second set, but after a 12-12 tie, Rogersville went on an 11-2 run.
“We always say, ‘Play games of 5,’” McGranahan said. “So the first game is to 5, the next game is to 10. You really focus on those five points, so having that lead the whole time really helps.”
In earlier semifinals, Buffalo had to go three sets to beat Bolivar and Rogersville beat Marshfield in two sets.
The Lady Wildcats will play Fulton on Saturday in Reeds Spring. The winner plays either Reeds Spring or Pleasant Hill later in the day for a trip the Class 3 state championships next weekend.
PHOTOS: ROGERSVILLE VS. MARSHFIELD