TROPHY CLUB -- Given the goals set prior to the season, Trophy Club Nelson coach Libby Pacheco admits it's been a mixed bag of success.
Tuesday, the Bobcats registered loud and clear why they're a serious contender in 2012, defeating Keller Timber Creek 25-14, 25-18, 25-10 in the second match of a pool-play doubleheader.
Nelson (18-11 overall) also rallied to defeat Prosper in an early game, 21-25, 26-24, 25-22, 22-25, 15-8.
"This is what I wanted to see tonight," Pacheco said. "Because of how well we played on defense, we can really make several adjustments and not skip a beat."
Against Timber Creek, it was a display of outside hitting that struck the biggest chord.
Sophomore Haley Tippett and junior Eva Koster were dominant against a strong Timber Creek front line that features junior Lauren Mills, an early commitment to SMU.
Tippett had 14 kills and Koster recorded eight.
The effort means Nelson's outside game, where the team is hitting .250, seems to be peaking at the right time as district play kicks off on Friday.
Tippett talked more about the defensive effort overall as the main key Tuesday.
"We're not going to have much of a hitting game if we can't play defense," she said. "Lauren's a great player and for us to come up with so many digs on her hitting says a lot."
Nelson hammered away in the first set, pulling away from a 7-6 advantage with a 13-7 run. Timber Creek had seven errors in that stretch, but Tippett was fierce from the left side.
She knocked down two kills, had a block and a service ace during the run.
It left Timber Creek reeling early, but coach Cathy Reeves said she's pleased with her 23-7 team.
"We've played a lot of games so there was a little bit of fatigue," she said. "All in all, we're starting to round out but we've had some injuries that have hurt our depth."
Because of the injuries, Mills is forced to really work several aspects of the floor. She had eight kills and one block while putting in a strong defensive effort.
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