The Portales Lady Rams led start to finish Thursday night and dominated rival Lovington 25-14, 25-13, 25-17 in their District 4-3A opener at the Ram Athletic Center.
Senior outside hitter Kristen Wagner had 13 kills and five aces for the Lady Rams (11-4). Seniors Simone Laurenz and Valerie Villanueva contributed 13 and 12 kills, respectively, while senior Pari Cox had 14 assists.
“Kristen got on a real good serving run and so did (junior setter) Brooke Lopez,” PHS coach Ruth Chavez said. “We served aggressively and forced (the Lady Wildcats) to not be able to run their offense.”
It was the second loss in district play for the Lady Wildcats (5-11).
Chavez said with the way Lopez has come along as a setter has given her the opportunity to make some moves in the lineup.
“Brooke stepping up and playing so well has allowed us to move (sophomore) Sheraya (Cox to middle blocker, from setter),” Chavez said.
Portales returns to action on Saturday with a rematch against Artesia on the road. The Lady Bulldogs (15-1), who played at Roswell High on Thursday night, beat the Lady Rams in four games earlier this month at the RAC, but suffered their first loss of the season on Tuesday at Roswell Goddard in five sets.