Flash Staff Report
(August 26, 2017) — The fourth edition of The Flash Today fall sports magazine went to press last Monday, you know, back when Jayci Morton was still ironing out the kinks, so to speak, in her transition to from left outside hitter to middle blocker.
But this weekend, she ruled the middle, and the only kinks were ones she caused opponents before the Leander Volleypalooza was called off a day early due to the approach of the powerful Hurricane Harvey. There had already been 16 teams withdraw from the tournament after Thursday pool play.
Stephenville was among those who stayed, facing Huntsville, Austin Anderson and Liberty Hill before all teams were sent home Friday evening while it was still safe to travel, as not everyone was fortunate to be traveling north away from the storm.
Even in dropping two of the three Friday, a storm continues to brew for Stephenville, one that could be right on time with August winding down and 8-4A district play beginning September 12 at Godley. The Honeybees’ next competition is back home at Gandy Gym Tuesday against Granbury, with first serve expected about 6:30 p.m. following a junior varsity match at 5:30.
It took Stephenville all three sets (best 2 of 3 in tournament play) to edge Hunstville 25-21, 22-25, 25-22. They lost to Austin Anderson 15-25, 24-26 and also fell to Liberty Hill 13-25, 25-18, 15-25.
Morton stuffed the stat sheet about s full as possible in just three sets against Huntsville when she registered 11 kills, five aces, seven kills and seven blocks. She recorded a .440 attack percentage, served 16 times and five of the seven blocks were solo.
The rest of the day may not have gone as planned for the Bees, but Morton was still solid in the middle with four kills, three blocks, two digs and an ace against Andeson before posting a two in each of those four categories versus Liberty Hill. In seven total sets Friday, the junior middle had 17 kills, 12 blocks, 11 digs and eight aces.
Morton was coming off an eight-kill performance in a narrow three-set loss to Georgetown Eastview to conclude pool play on Thursday.
Stephenville head coach Fran Metzger has said on the record there is at least one popular attack from the middle that Morton hits better than any Honeybee she has coached in 23 seasons of Stephenville volleyball.
So much for transitioning. Now, instead of having a junior in the midst of a position change, Stephenville appears to have a junior ready to dominate and anchor the middle for the next season and a half to come.