Look to recover at Homecoming
by Than Acuff
The Crested Butte Titans volleyball team headed into the teeth of the lion last weekend, traveling to Del Norte for matches against perennial league powerhouses Del Norte and Sargents. While the Titans played some of their best volleyball, it still wasn’t enough as they lost both matches, but not without a fight, taking both teams to five sets.
“It was a long day of volleyball,” says head coach Marla Covey. “Both Del Norte and Sargents are strong teams and our team battled with each of them.”
“They rallied all day,” adds coach Heather Perry.
The Titans were in the midst of one of their best starts to a season in years when they loaded the bus for Del Norte. They pulled off a thrilling comeback win over the South Park Burros last week and took a 4-1 record into the Del Norte matches looking to shake up the league.
“You never know,” says Perry. “All of our kids are great players, it’s just, are they going to all show up and play great on that day? If they do then anything can happen.”
The Titans opened the day against the Del Norte Tigers and went straight to work, winning the opening set 25-22 only to fall in the second set 25-14. While Titans teams of the past might have just folded and lost the next two sets and the match, this year’s team is different, as they returned to the court to win the third set 25-19.
“I think this particular varsity group wants it more,” says Perry. “They want to work hard and play well.”
Ultimately though, the Tigers proved too strong to shake as Del Norte won the next two sets 25-22 and 15-5 to stave off the Titans’ upset bid. The Titans put together their best service effort as a team all season, serving 90.7 percent in the match. Isabel Young led the team with 10 kills, followed by Emilya Ramsey with six. The team as a whole tallied 27 blocks in the match.
“They were playing well in each set and it went back and forth and could have gone either way,” says Perry. “We just couldn’t close the deal in the end.”
The Titans closed out the tough day against the Sargents Farmers and the match was almost a carbon copy of the first one against Del Norte. Once again the Titans came out gunning, winning the opening set 25-20 only to drop the second set 25-19. And, once again, the Titans were determined to push the Farmers and came out in the third set to battle to a closely fought 25-23 win.
Unfortunately, the gas ran out of the Titans’ tank and they lost the final two sets 25-17, 15-5 to drop the match. Annie Duryea led the Titans with six kills, followed by Corinna Donovan with five and Madison Mollison with four. Madison Lambert was the overall service leader for the Titans on the day.
“The game to 15 goes super quick and we fell behind 8-3 and it got away from them,” says Perry. “Volleyball is such a momentum sport and we just lost it at the end. But they competed well against both teams.”
The Titans look to return to their winning ways this weekend as they host Cripple Creek and Center in mighty Mt. Olympus on Saturday, September 26 for Homecoming. The matches start at 11 a.m. and Perry is looking for some hometown support to help spur the Titans to a couple of match wins.
“They’re good games to have for homecoming and Center could go to five sets,” says Perry. “I think they’ve started to find their rhythm and last weekend we found the dynamic that is starting to gel.”