Lady Warriors net a big win over the Pirates

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Heading into Tuesday’s match with Grants, the Socorro Lady Warriors volleyball team was coming off a tough loss to Animas and was only three days away from heading to the Goddard Tournament to square off against some talented larger schools. Stealing a win from the Pirates would have given Socorro a little bit of momentum before it left for Roswell, and after all was said and done on Tuesday, that’s exactly what it accomplished.

The Lady Warriors (5-2) fought a five-set victory over 4A Grants (3-2), 20-25, 25-22, 25-17, 23-25, 15-9.

Some good news for Socorro, aside from beating a solid school in a higher classification, is that head coach Joni Mauldin saw her team display heart and unity on the court, something it may have failed to display in last Saturday’s match with the Panthers. Some even better news? They’re still just getting warmed up.

The Lady Warriors still have more than a full month to prepare for district play, and in between now and then the team will have plenty of time to continue improving on its good start.

“We just need to continue playing our game and continue to improve,” Mauldin said via email. “As the season progresses, the teams also improve as well. We just need to build on each game, and hopefully by district we will be on our game.”

Part of that progression is not only in regard to a steady increase in the talent it’ll face, but to the mental toughness and team communication Mauldin stressed even before the start of the season. Socorro seems to have the aptitude to compete with most teams, but it doesn’t always translate on to the court. Tuesday’s win showed that when the Lady Warriors operate as a whole unit, good things can happen.

“I saw unity, I saw heart, and I saw them leave it all on the court,” Mauldin said.

“I believe they are all making a┬áconscious effort to keep their emotions and attitudes in check. They are learning to swallow their pride and always keep in mind the best interest of the team. They know it’s not a me, me, me concept, but a we, we, we.

“I’ve told them that encouragement and positive attitudes is a priority. I could see each and every girl picking each other up on Tuesday night and that shows they truly care about the team.”

While Mauldin said her expectations for her team so far are being met, she pointed out that it’s still very early in the season and she’ll continue to expect the girls to work hard in practice, remain focused and stay hungry.

“The season is just getting started, and the best is yet to come,” she said. “I know the ability of this team and I know they can compete with the best of them. But we never settle, and I always ask them if they are satisfied. Their answer is always no. Even after the win against Grants on Tuesday, I asked if they were satisfied, and like it should be, their answer is still ‘no.’”

The Lady Warriors will be back in action at home on Tuesday when they play host to the Valencia High School Jaguars.