TAYLOR — Despite another in a long line of slow starts, Ellison powered through thanks to a relentless defense, and a combined 50 digs, in a 29-27, 25-15, 25-20 victory over host Taylor on Tuesday.

“My defense is starting to read the opponent hitters and positioning themselves around the block, while also doing a great job of covering our hitters,” Lady Eagles coach William De Gracia said.

Senior specialist Christen Richardson led with 18 digs, followed by 12 and 11 for Bryanna Sanchez and Jazmine German, respectively.

Six-foot-2 blocker Kaitlyn Shearer led Ellison (11-11) with 12 kills while Amanda Glover added eight, and setter Malaysia Hope had 18 assists in the final warmup before District 8-5A play begins Friday.

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