It's been an up-and-down season, but last weekend the Hotchkiss volleyball team posted consecutive and convincing wins over Soroco and Plateau Valley to end the season with a 7-11 overall, 4-7 league record.
"Tonight was awesome," said head coach Kendal Roberts following Saturday's three-set win over Plateau Valley, a team Hotchkiss had lost to in early-season play by a match total of 11 points.
After Friday's win over Soroco, senior middle hitter Savannah Rocha said they would settle up with Plateau Valley this time around. "We've prepared enough and come a long way since then. That was early in the season."
Plateau Valley has height in 6-foot hitters Hunter Morse and Sierra Reynolds. They serve hard, and they hit hard. But they didn't rattle the Lady Bulldogs, who fought off an early string of attacks to win the first set, 25-22.
Hotchkiss came back from a seven-point deficit to win set two, 25-22, and rolled over the Lady Cowboys in the third set, shutting down their hitting game and dishing out 10 kills and four aces for the 25-12 win. Rocha ended the final set with a block and three kills, and Daryl Batt added three aces and four kills.
With assists by setters Kelli Buhrdorf and Jessie Violett, Rocha and Batt combined for 25 kills against Soroco. Sadie Smith added seven kills and Kristina Deloury delivered five.
After 25-19 wins in the first two sets, Hotchkiss was down by 10 in the third set, but Batt, backed by a strong offense, served 10 unanswered points to tie the game at 21. The set ended in a 26-24 loss for Hotchkiss, but that only served to fire up the team. Down 15-24, Soroco threatened a comeback when Sadie Smith hammered a kill shot in for the 25-20 win.
Roberts knows her team will face tough competition in this week's district tournament. No. 1 seed Paonia is undefeated, and Meeker, Vail Mountain and Rangely all have winning records. They know they are underdogs, but Hotchkiss could surprise a few teams.
While seeding and pairings were unavailable at press time, the Lady Bulldogs will enter the district tournament seeded either fifth or sixth.
Last week's wins marks the first time in this up-and-down season that the team has won two in a row. They are playing the best they've played all season and continue to improve, said Roberts. "They believe in themselves again. They are where I knew they could be this time of year. Just in the last couple of weeks they've come a long way. As long as they can keep up the momentum, they should do well."blog comments powered by Disqus