If Mashequa Gentry wanted to know what her volleyball team was made of she got a pretty good idea on opening night.
There's no quit in these Tigers.
Gentry, who took over Corsicana's young volleyball team, watched her kids battle back all night in the Tiger Gym, where they erased a 2-0 deficit and won back-to-back dramatic sets to send their opening night match into a fifth set before losing to Fairfield 15-9,
Fairfield escaped (and that's the right word for it) with a 26-24, 25-23, 20-25, 19-25, 15-9 opening night victory, but Gentry's young Tigers scrambled and fought and simply wouldn't go away in a match that lasted more than two hours.
The Tigers lost the opening set 26-24 in a nailbiter that didn't end until they made an inspiring 5-1 run to come back from 23-19 to knot the score at 24 with some big plays at the net from Claire Johnson, Sheridan Ellington and Nayeli Lara, whose slick slam tied the set at 24-24.
They battled and made it close in the second set, storming back from a 23-17 deficit to close to 24-23 before losing 25-23, and then found the right combinations and just kept coming back to stay alive in the next two sets.
Ellington's block broke up 17-17 tie in the third set that ignited a 8-3 that finished off Fairfield 25-20. The Tigers found the same momentum in the fourth set and broke up another 17-17 tie to go on an 8-2 run to win 25-19 to stay alive and force a fifth set.
Several Tigers played well, including Paige Franks, Lara Bwicheilug, Gabby James, Brinly Burke, Madison Depugh, Leryann Ilon, Kayla Esa, Lara, Johnson and Ellington as one player after another stepped up throughout the match.