‘Dogs give crowd a reason to cheer with volleyball win over Central
The East Valley rivalry week got going in full force Thursday night.
With an electric atmosphere for the volleyball match at Palisade High School, the Bulldogs came out with a 25-20, 25-14, 25-14 victory over Central.
Each school had a large, vocal student section for the nonleague match.
“It was so hard to hear,” said Palisade senior Audrey Steinkirchner, who led the Bulldogs with 14 kills and 13 digs.
But playing on their home floor, she said, the Bulldogs had no problem adjusting to the atmosphere.
“I think it motivated us more than it hurt us,” she said. “At times when we made mistakes, it definitely helped us get back in the game.”
The Bulldogs fell behind early in each of the first two games, but in both instances, they put together scoring rallies to take the lead.
In the final game, Palisade rattled off four straight points with the score tied at 1-1 and never looked back.
“Once we got into our groove I felt like everyone out there contributed to the team’s success,” Palisade coach Wendy MacAskill said.
Offensively, the Bulldogs got behind the senior duo of Steinkirchner and Mecia Dearth, who combined for 24 kills, and junior setter Shannon Rhodes had 33 assists.
Central was led by Taylor Head and Kimber Baker, each with six kills. Head also had two blocks.
Senior Demi Ruder came off the bench to record 12 digs and two aces.
Despite the loss, Central coach Beth Nelson said she was pleased with her team’s play.
“We’re a really young, inexperienced team this year and I think Palisade’s one of the top teams,” she said. “Overall we’ve got a lot of room to grow and get better and I think with these girls we have the ability to do that.”
Eagle Valley 3, Grand Junction 2: Grand Junction opened its season with a 25-23, 11-25, 25-17, 21-25, 15-11 loss at home against Eagle Valley.
Justine Roof led the tigers with 14 kills and six blocks and Kacie Jay had 40 digs.
Fruita Monument’s Joey Saad won the Montrose Invitational at the Links at Cobble Creek.
Saad shot a 68, three strokes better than Montrose’s Josh Derosia, Basalt’s Tristan Rourbaugh and Durango’s Morgan Miller.
The Wildcats tied with Durango to take second in team standings with a score of 230 and Grand Junction tied for fifth at 234. Montrose won the tournament with 219.
Grand Junction’s Donny Kinnaman shot a 74 to take sixth.
Central opened its season with a 3-1 loss at Glenwood Springs.
The Warriors fell behind on a goal in the fifth minute, but tied it in the sixth with a goal by Leo Herman on an assist by Cory Rhodes.
Glenwood’s Mike McGraw scored all three of his team’s goals.
Central goalie Conor Beach had 12 saves.
Fruita Monument swept Central 7-0 at home.
The win included a comeback from freshman Matthew Harris, who beat Drake Giese 6-3, 0-6, 6-4 at No. 2 singles.
“He put it together and showed a lot of heart,” Fruita coach Clint Davis said.
At No. 1 singles, Vinny Castellini beat Jesi Nordstrom 6-4, 7-5.