Lady Stangs lose in 4 to Lady Lions

Ron Howell
Sports Editor

Sweetwater completed its season-opening two-game swing at home on Tuesday by facing ex-district rival Brownwood, losing a 3-1 match decision at Mustang Gym to the Lady Lions.
The Lady Mustangs led for much of the first three games, but Brownwood rallied late to win the first two games by scores of 25-19 and 25-23. Sweetwater then led all the way in Game 3 for a 25-21 victory, but couldn’t carry the momentum into Game 4 as Brownwood won 25-22 in the match finale.
Sweetwater had to shuffle its rotation after losing setter Elli Lehnert to an injury in Monday’s opener against Denver City, and it will take time for players to get comfortable shifting from a 6-2 — or two-setter rotation — to a one-setter 5-1 setup, head coach Morgan Doyle said. “We had some confusion about where to be on defense and we moved Shavie (Green) to the outside,” Doyle said.
“But being able to play Brownwood tough early in the year is a good thing.”
Sweetwater took an 11-4 lead at the start of its Game 3 match and held on after Brownwood rallied to get within two points, finishing with a kill by Green.
But the Lady Lions got off to a good start in Game 4 and returned the favor by leading all the way to drop Sweetwater’s season mark to 0-2.
Brownwood overcame a 15-12 deficit in Game 1 and also won Game 2 in come-from-behind fashion by taking the last three points.
Hannah Mobley led the Lady Mustangs by collecting 15 kills, plus 11 digs, three aces and one block. Sweetwater also got 24 assists and 12 digs from setter Mia Valdez, 16 digs from libero Bri Moriel, eight kills from Green and 11 and nine digs, respectively, from Marissa Villanueva and Nikki Gutierrez.
The JV team lost 15-25, 17-25 and the freshmen lost 6-25, 7-25. Victoria Neri and Paris Houston were the top JV players, while Keyanna Tillis was the freshman team’s top player.
Sweetwater will play at Abilene Cooper at 5:30 p.m. Thursday in its next match.