TIOGA — With the entire roster back following a region final appearance, Andrea Perez and the Lady Bulldogs expected big things.
What they got was the biggest thing of all.
Perez, a starter from Day 1, was once again the focal point of the offense and helped Tioga not only reach the state tournament in just the program’s third varsity season, the Lady Bulldogs finished off the year with the Class 1A championship.
“It really doesn’t seem real still,” Perez said. “Our one goal was to get to state. We got there and wanted to show we deserved to be there. Once there we knew we were good enough.”
The junior hitter averaged 19.2 kills and six blocks per match, led the team in serving percentage at 97.4 percent and show her versatility playing all the way around the rotation and led the team in digs.
She was the District 10-1A Most Valuable Player, an all-state selection by the Texas Girls Coaches Association and the Most Valuable Player of the 1A state tournament with a pair of monster performances in a playoff run that included three five-game victories.
In the semifinal win over Leverett’s Chapel Hill, Perez had 21 kills.
Tioga then captured the title by outlasting Bronte, 25-23, 18-25, 25-12, 20-25, 15-11, with Perez putting down 32 kills to go with 18 digs.
“I wanted to win so bad. I gave it all I had,” she said. “I’m really excited for next year. Most of our team is coming back.”
For her efforts, Perez has been selected as the Herald Democrat All-Texomaland Volleyball Player of the Year for the 2016 season.