It’s been a rough start to the 2021 volleyball season for the Hotchkiss Bulldogs. The strain of three losses to begin the season was broken with Saturday’s 3-2 win over the visiting Hayden Tigers. Prior to that, the Bulldogs had losses to North Park, Caprock Academy and Soroco to start the season.

Hotchkiss began the week with a loss to Caprock, 25-20, 20-25, 17-25, 25-5 and 12-15. Junior Ariana VenJohn had eight kills for Hotchkiss with eight blocks on defense. Juniors Izzy Houseweart had seven kills, Indigo Miller-Barnes had five kills and Lottie Hollembeak recorded four kills. Miller-Barnes dished out nine assists with Hollembeak and sophomore Haylee Lozano adding 12 and 10 receptions respectively in the loss.

The Bulldogs scored well against Soroco on Friday but could not break into the win column with set losses of 12-25, 23-25 and 24-26.

Miller-Barnes had five kills and four blocks for the Bulldogs against the Rams. VenJohn finished the match with six blocks and freshman Raney Moore had four. Hollembeak and junior Vianney Mendoza had 14 and 10 service receptions respectively for the Bulldogs.

Soroco’s Peyton Parker had 11 kills, seven aces and 14 digs to pace the Rams’ statistics. Irene Hoff had 13 assists in Soroco’s win.

Hayden won the opening set with Hotchkiss (25-19) on Saturday with the Bulldogs tying the match with a 25-18 win in set two. The Tigers won set three, 25-14, and Hotchkiss tied the match with a 25-18 win in set four. Hotchkiss won the deciding fifth set, 15-10.

Miller-Barnes had a great match for Hotchkiss with 10 kills and 23 blocks with VenJohn adding nine kills and 22 blocks to keep pace with Miller-Barnes. Mendoza’s 19 blocks was also impressive. Hollembeak’s seven aces were positive sparks in Hotchkiss’ victory which moved the Bulldogs to a 1-3 record for the season.

Next on Hotchkiss’ volleyball schedule is a home match against Plateau Valley (2-2) on Saturday, April 3, with matches set for 11 a.m., 12 p.m. and 1 p.m.

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