Sailors volleyball topples Huskies, falls to Devils | SteamboatToday.com

Sailors volleyball topples Huskies, falls to Devils

Luke Graham

Steamboat Springs High School seniors Devin Wilkinson, left, and Jayde Mattox raise their arms for a block during their match Saturday against Battle Mountain. The Sailors beat the Huskies in four games.

— The Steamboat Springs High School volleyball team split a double-header Saturday, prevailing against Battle Mountain in four games before falling in three to Western Slope League champion Eagle Valley.

The Sailors came into Saturday with an opportunity to compete for a league title.

Steamboat, 14-3 overall and 10-2 in league play, had to beat Eagle Valley to have a shot.

With the Devils’ win, Eagle Valley secured its second consecutive league title. Eagle Valley won, 25-21, 25-20 and 25-21.

“It was good that it was a big game in the sense they had a reason to get up for it,” said Eagle Valley coach Shawn Weatherred, whose team was in a hurry with homecoming in its sights Saturday night. “If we’re going to be late for homecoming, let’s go in there with no regrets.”

The two teams battled in the first game, before Eagle Valley pulled away. The real turning point came early in the second game.

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The Sailors jumped out to a 9-1 lead, before the Devils responded.

With sophomore Kelsey VanGoey serving, Eagle Valley ripped off eight straight points to tie the game at 9.

The two teams traded points before Eagle Valley took its first lead at 18-17. From there, the Devils’ multifaceted attack was too much.

In the third game, Eagle Valley jumped up 12-10 before putting the game away.

“I’m not sure this team believes they’re capable of beating a team that good,” Steamboat coach Wendy Hall said. “I know they want to believe it and beat a team that good. I don’t think they played with that look in their eye I saw in the morning. I felt like we played them tight to the 20th point, but we could never make a run after that.”

Against Battle Mountain, Steamboat started slow before pulling away with a 3-1 win.

The Sailors won 20-25, 25-18, 25-18 and 27-25.

After falling behind early in Game 1, Steamboat started to play better. The Sailors cruised through games two and three before hitting a wall in game four.

The Huskies led for most

of the match and were up 23-16 when the Sailors staged a comeback.

Steamboat got the score to 23-18, before Battle Mountain’s Samantha Miletich got a kill to put the Huskies on game point.

But the Sailors wouldn’t give up. Steamboat reeled off point after point to finally come away with a 27-25 win.

“That’s how our season has been going,” Battle Mountain coach Lara Bossow said. “When it comes down to the fourth or fifth game, we error ourselves out of the game.”

Steamboat now preps for a huge week of games. The team plays at 6:30 p.m. Thursday at Palisade.

The Bulldogs are one game behind the Sailors for second place in the league. Hall said that although Saturday’s loss was tough, she thinks she has a group of girls that can bounce back from just about anything.

“The good news is we still got some season left,” she said. “We have time to make adjustments and get better. We’re going to see another team as good as that. They are a good group. This is what it comes down to. They never turn on each other. When times are tough with this team, they will come back.”