Temple’s Jessica Vaden (7) tries to hit against Killeen’s Janelle Etherly on Tuesday in Temple. The Tem-Cats held on for a five-set win over Killeen.

TEMPLE — Head coach Courtney Mitchell knew the Killeen Lady Kangaroos were going to be hungry on Tuesday night when they arrived to face the Temple Tem-Cats. 

“I knew (Killeen) was going to be aggressive because I knew they were upset,” Mitchell said. “What they played in Gatesville wasn’t their best and I knew they would give us their best tonight. I told the girls to be ready for it.”

Mitchell’s Tem-Cats had swept the Roos at the Gatesville Tournament last weekend, and the Roos admittedly had revenge on the mind.

Revenge may best be served cold, but if you can’t handle the serve, you can’t get the revenge.

The Tem-Cats served up 11 aces, including four key ones by freshman Jessica Vaden in the second set to take down the Lady Roos, 22-25, 26-24, 25-21, 20-25, 15-11 at Wildcat Gym.

“We were hungry for a win because of what happened in the Gatesville Tournament” Killeen head coach Joanne Knowles Shiffler said, referring to the Tem-Cats 26-24, 25-20 win at the Gatesville. “But we got ourself into a hole in that fifth set that we couldn’t recover from.”

But the Lady Roos didn’t look like they’d even need a fifth set the way they were playing early, winning a tight first set and were up 20-15 in the second. Then Vaden began to serve.

Seven serves, four aces and the Tem-Cats (7-6) led 22-20.

Temple was able to close out the set and then took the third as well for a 2-1 lead.

“They have a few servers that got us in a four-five and six-point rut,” Shiffler said. “And we just can’t let that happen. They have some good top spin servers and we’ll have to adjust to that.”

The Lady Roos (9-7) were able to bounce back and force a deciding fifh set, but the Tem-Cats took the momentum early, jumping out to a quick 5-0 lead.

After Killeen finally got on the board, Temple outside hitter Rhea Miles got the 10th of her team-high 11 kills to grab the momentum right back.

“This was a nice win for us,” Vaden said. “The first day back in school and everybody was here watching. We knew Killeen was going to be hungry for a win and we had to do everything we could to fight back.”

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