AUSTIN — The final match of the Austin ISD Jason Landers Invitational may have been a struggle for the Shoemaker Lady Grey Wolves, but coach Merdith Shaw-Moore is about the next step.
“This is the preseason, but the main thing I want them to understand is the preseason sets the tone for district,” Shaw-Moore said. “Now is the time where we fix the glitches, the mental breakdowns and things like that.”
After beginning the regular season with a win on Tuesday, Shoemaker traveled to Austin as a part of a 30-team tournament where they played nine games against teams from Austin, San Antonio and Manor.
The Lady Wolves have two more tournaments and three more regular season games before opening District 12-6A play at Killeen on Sept. 12.
The Lady Wolves are coming off a 2013 season in which they went 20-19 and finished with a winning record for the first time in the history of the program.
During the first day of play, Shoemaker had a 2-0 (25-22, 25-22) win sandwiched between 2-0 losses to Austin Bowie (25-4, 25-13) and San Antonio Lee (25-17, 25-18).
The highlights of Day 1 included Briana McCutchen leading the team with seven kills and four blocks against Lanier. Gabriela Sierra added 12 assists to go along with two kills and Lashayla Rider also had 12 digs.
Shoemaker started Day 2 with a hard-fought 2-0 loss to Austin LBJ (25-18, 25-23), but rebounded to dominate Austin Eastside Memorial 2-0 (25-12, 25-4) and sweep Manor (25-13, 25-21).
Reagan Felton finished the Manor game with 10 digs, 12 assists and two blocks while Bianca Delgado added four kills and 17 digs. McCutcheon had a strong game with three kills and five blocks.
“We went though everything step by step again,” Rider said after the Manor win. “We listened to what the coaches said. We listened to their advice, let it sink into our head and we did it once we got on the court.”
Delgado finished with four kills and eight assists against Eastside while Felton had 10 assists and two kills. McCutcheon and Tyriete Dixon added eight kills and five blocks.
Shoemaker went 1-2 during bronze bracket play on Saturday and finished in sixth place in that bracket.
The Lady Wolves fell to the Austin Lady Maroons 2-0 (25-14, 25-21), swept Kyle Lehman (25-22, 25-14) and fell to Austin Crockett 2-0 (25-22, 25-20).
Sierra was Shoemaker’s top distributor with 14 assists against Lehman. Delgado led the Lady Wolves defense with 25 digs and three blocks. Shadavia Blakemore and Rider combined for 27 digs.
Shoemaker visits Bartlett on Tuesday for another nondistrict match.