SACHSE — In a re-match from the first-round of the playoffs last season, the Trenton Lady Tigers stuck to the script and it played out exactly the same.
Despite finishing a spot higher in the District 11-2A standings, Trenton still wound up facing Frost to open the postseason after the Lady Polar Bears slipped from their perch atop the 12-2A standings.
“You never know what’s going to happen in this game. I’m never relieved until we hit 25,” Lady Tigers head coach Sandy McMillan said. “I had faith and confidence in them. I always feel good about how we play.”
A pair of gigantic runs sandwiched around a late comeback led Trenton to a 25-14, 26-24, 25-9 against Frost in a Class 2A Region II bi-district match at Sachse on Tuesday night.
Trenton (18-22) will face Poolville in the area round at 7 p.m. on Thursday at North Texas.
Maddison Lavoie had 15 kills, Gracie Holden added 12 kills and 11 digs, Bethany Nors handed out 18 assists and Dalila Hernandez collected nine digs for Trenton, which didn’t drop a game against Frost for the second straight postseason.
“I knew if we played the way we can we would be in a good spot,” McMillan said. “This group has a lot of heart. They play for each other. They work their butts off for each other. That’s what I love about them.”
Trenton finished off the sweep with a big run in Game 3 to take away any momentum from Frost. Lavoie had four kills during a 13-1 stretch that turned a one-point advantage into a 17-4 lead.
Frost put together four straight points and almost trimmed the deficit to single digits but the hole was too big to overcome and the Lady Tigers closed a 7-1 streak to clinch the victory.
The Lady Polar Bears missed a chance to tie the match when they let Game 2 slip away. Trenton started strong like it did in Game 1, racing out to a 6-1 advantage. But Frost made sure the Lady Tigers didn’t get too far out in front that they couldn’t chase them down.
Frost pulled even at eight but Trenton regained the lead. The Lady Polar Bears then tied it twice before going in front at 15-14. That started a nip-and-tuck finish to the game.
Trenton was able to tie the score at 17, yet Frost jumped right back ahead. It looked like the Lady Polar Bears were going to stay there behind the play of Mackenzie Martinez, who would come up with a key kill or block when the Lady Tigers were on the verge of making a run.
Martinez had back-to-back killed and Frost went up 21-18 and the Lady Polar Bears were a point away from taking Game 2 at 24-22. Gabbi Edwards overpowered a block and Lavoie put down an ace to tie the score.
“When I called that last timeout, it was just to settle them down,” McMillan said. “We’ve had a bunch of games where we had been down at 24 and had to come back. Stay the course and we’d have a chance.”
A Frost hitting error put Trenton in front and they took the 2-o lead on net foul by the Lady Polar Bears.
After Frost started the match with a kill, Trenton earned a sideout on a hitting error and then Lavoie stepped to the service line and reeled off 14 straight points. A third of them were aces, Holden mixed in a kill and suddenly the Lady Tigers had a commanding lead.
The Lady Polar Bears overcame the terrible start by countering with a 9-1 burst that cut the deficit to only five. Frost was never able to get closer than that margin, however, and when it did it again on back-to-back hitting errors by the Lady Tigers at 18-13, Lavoie put down four kills and Hernandez served up an ace for six straight points.
The teams traded serves to close out the frame and Trenton was on its way to advancing.