Thursday, September 15, 2005
Before the volleyball season, Steamboat Springs coach Wendy Hall tabbed the Glenwood Springs hitting duo of Leah Hinkey and Leanna Lawson as tops in the league.
Her belief was reaffirmed Thursday after the Demon seniors combined for 44 kills in Glenwood's 25-12, 19-25, 25-14, 25-10 win in Steamboat.
"They get up for Steamboat every year," coach Scott Nykerk said about his Demons.
The Demons improved to 8-0 overall with the win and 2-0 in Western Slope League play.
By comparison, Thursday's match was the Sailors' second of the season, as they moved to 1-1 overall and 0-1 in league play. Steamboat had nearly two full weeks off between Thursday's loss and a season-opening win against Greeley Central.
Obviously, Hall said, that was a factor Thursday night.
"We need more matches," she said. "We had a lot of the kids on the floor (Thursday night) who have never played at that pace before."
Glenwood's strength is in its power and experience -- all six starters are seniors. Only two of Steamboat's starters from last year -- Tara King and Missy Chotvacs -- are playing in the same position. A third, Hestia Chase, has moved to the outside. The Sailors' two middle blockers, Lisa Floyd and Heidi Lord, are sophomores, and it's tough to ask sophomores to try to slow down Glenwood's quick attack from the middle.
Glenwood won the first, third and fourth games easily, overpowering Steamboat at the net and from behind the service line. King, Steamboat's setter, spent most of Thursday night running or diving after errant passes.
"We've got to pass better," Hall said. "We will see those kind of servers for the rest of the year, maybe not those kinds of hitters, but those servers. Mentally we broke down."
The second game -- a 25-19 win for the Sailors -- was easily the best game of the year for the young Steamboat squad and the best game of Thursday's match. After falling behind 10-3 early, Steamboat rallied to tie the game at 14-14 when King and Floyd put up a double block on Hinkey. The teams exchanged leads until the Sailors pulled ahead, 20-19, on sophomore Katy Gary's kill.
"We controlled the ball," Hall said. "We got the momentum, and we had some good emotion."
Gary and Chase, who led Steamboat with eight kills each Thursday, closed out the second game for the Sailors.
"We lost ball control," Nykerk said. "Whenever you do that, your offense breaks down pretty quickly."
Up next for Steamboat is a 1 p.m. match Saturday at Rifle. The junior varsity, which defeated Glenwood in three games Thursday, plays at noon. The freshmen play at 11 a.m.
-- To reach Melinda Mawdsley call 871-4208 or e-mail email@example.com