McHi ranked No. 4 in state; 5 RGV teams make poll

McAllen High's Madie Garza (6) sets the ball against McAllen Memorial during a Poundfest championship match at McAllen High School on Saturday, Aug 10, 2019, in McAllen. (Joel Martinez |

A McAllen High opening-day loss on the road to Laredo Alexander — capped off with a 15-13 loss in the fifth set — seems like a long time ago.

It was in early August, 32 matches ago. During that time, the Bulldogs have run off 32 straight wins and have rocketed up the Texas Girls Coaches Association Volleyball poll. Four weeks ago, McHi was ranked 16th in the state in Class 6A. On Tuesday, the latest poll had the Bulldogs at No. 4 in the state and one of five Rio Grande Valley teams ranked among the elite in their respective classes.

“There are some awesome teams in this state and we just need to continue working to get better because it will come down to how we finish district and then one game at a time,” McAllen High head coach Paula Dodge said. “It’s nice to get that recognition after all the hard work these girls have put in. It’s a very nice statement for all the Valley teams.”

Despite losing to McHi, McAllen Memorial and Laredo Alexander — all in the past two weeks — Los Fresnos remained in the poll at No. 24 with a 25-8 record.

In Class 5A, Mission Veterans was expected to face an uphill battle without Makenzie Gerlach and Jackie Howell from last year’s team. Still, the Patriots are 27-5, losing most of their matches to larger Class 6A schools, including an early season match with McAllen Memorial.

Mission Veterans is coached by Diana Lerma. Her sister, Gloria Treviño, coaches the Edcouch-Elsa Yellow Jackets, which are ranked No. 17 with a 20-6 record.

Defending district champion San Isidro also finds itself ranked No. 21 with a 16-8 record in the Class 1A-2A polls.

Two games of note are just around the corner, too. McAllen Memorial travels to McHi for a battle of the projected top two teams in District 30-6A at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, while Sharyland Pioneer travels to Mission Veterans at 7 p.m. Tuesday for district supremacy as teams continue to go through the first go-through of district play.

Editor’s Note: This article has been updated to correct a name and the location of a game.