Boyd fans flock to Garland for state tournament

By Reece Waddell | Published Thursday, November 15, 2018.
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It didn’t take long for Boyd fans to start forming a line outside the Curtis Culwell Center Thursday morning.

For the second straight year, family and friends flocked to Garland to cheer on the Lady Jackets in the 3A semifinal. After a heartbreaking loss to eventual champion Goliad ended its 2017 campaign, Boyd came into this season with one goal on its mind.

“The biggest thing is they have some unfinished business,” said Kim Todd, mother of senior all-state hitter Jordyn Todd. “They had one goal in mind this entire season and every step they have taken has been toward that final goal — which is not just get back to state, but they intend to win. They have worked their butts off all year long.”

Messenger photo by Joe Duty.

Two Boyd buses loaded with a combined 50 students made the hour-long trip to Garland, as the school district cancelled classes Thursday. Superintendent Ted West said the decision to give the kids the day off was an easy one.

He wanted as many people in the stands as possible to watch the Lady Jackets finish what they started.

“Anything we can do to create a home-court advantage, if there’s anything in my power to do it, I’m going to do it,” West said. “I think everybody feels like there’s some unfinished business to take care of. We’re really excited about it.

“That group of girls is the best that we have representing not just Boyd High School, but our entire school district. I would put those girls on a pedestal anywhere to represent our best and brightest. We’re proud to have them.”

The buzz surrounding the Lady Jackets has been palpable all year long. Boyd has been the No. 1 ranked team in 3A since Sept. 18 and went undefeated in league play.

Tommy Spencer, who graduated from Boyd in 1964, has driven the Lady Jackets’ bus to their playoff matches and said watching this team has been an unforgettable experience. His granddaughter is sophomore Rylee Spencer.

“It’s unbelievable knowing these girls are so good,” Tommy Spencer said. “It’s great. I’m having a blast with them. Everybody just loves these girls.”

When the final horn sounded to announce lineups Thursday morning, Boyd’s side of the arena was filled to the brim with green and gold.

“I’m very excited for this team,” said Kelly Valtr, father of senior Macee Valtr. “They have such great chemistry and lots of talent on the team. I couldn’t happier for them. The community support is awesome. It’s been a wonderful experience for us to be a part of this.”

And an hour later, the Lady Jackets avenged their 2017 semifinal loss, sweeping Vanderbilt Industrial 25-10, 25-7, 25-15. Three Boyd players ended the match with double-digit kills, led by Delaney Pellegrini with 16. Jordyn Todd buried 14 and Macee Valtr 12.

The Lady Jackets will play in the 3A championship match at 11 a.m. Saturday morning against Callisburg.

“When looking up in that crowd I know,” Macee Valtr said. “It’s really nice to see that and see my purpose. It helps drive you.”

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