SALADO — For Shyenne Hicks and the Salado volleyball Class of 2014, Tuesday’s regular season finally against Jarrell had all the importance and intensity of a playoff game, even though it wasn’t.
Instead Hicks and teammate Jaylee Sebek played as if they wouldn’t hit the court again for a good reason, they won’t for Salado.
Hicks and Sebek combined for 19 kills to help Salado (12-17, 7-7 District 22-2A) sweep Jarrell 27-25, 25-21, 26-24 on senior night at the Salado gym.
“We three seniors talked about it and we knew he had to come in here, win it and give it our hardest (try),” Hicks said. “Know that even if it was our last game, we gave it our hardest.”
The game was the last for Hicks and Sebek in Salado since the Lady Eagles did not qualify for the Class 2A playoffs.
Prior to the match, Hick, Sebek and Victoria Moseley were honored during a senior night ceremony.
Despite fracturing her back early in the season and only playing in six games this season, Moseley was in uniform and cheered for her teammates from the bench during the match.
“It was hard because I really love volleyball and I really wanted to be on the court, but I knew I couldn’t,” Moseley said. “But it was nice being able to support them as much as I could.”
Salado coach Tara Hatfield said that the senior class helped the program transition during her first season as head coach.
“All three of them brought a huge presence to our team,” Hatfield said. “We definitely wouldn’t have been the same without them.”
Hicks, a future Texas A&M-Kingsville infielder, and Sebek showcased that leadership and helped the Lady Eagles close out the match in a big way.
Sebek had her final two kills of the night to help Salado take a 23-22 lead in Game 3.
After Jarrell forced game point at 24-23, Hicks came up with her final kill from the left side of the net to tie things up at 24 points apiece.
From there junior middle blocker and right side hitter Taylor Atwood gave the Lady Eagles the lead back with a block then put down a spike from the middle of the net to clinch the match.
“Today we had a lot of energy,” Hicks said. “I think it just started at the beginning of the day knowing that it was our last game of the season.”
The Lady Eagles had to overcome a late 24-22 Jarrell lead in Game 1. A Hicks kill sparked a late 5-1 Lady Eagle run and her ace clinched Game 1 27-25.
Salado closed out Game 2 with a 10-2 run.
Despite losing some key seniors to graduation this season, Hatfield was encouraged by the fact that the Lady Eagles had nine underclassmen on the roster on Tuesday, including six juniors .
“I couldn’t be more excited for our program for the next couple of years,” Hatfield said. “We’re young, we’ve got some really good freshman and sophomores coming up and our junior class is studly.”