Three Garfield County high school volleyball teams earn postseason invites

Glenwood Springs Demon Bailey Winder celebrates with her teammates after a play during a game against Basalt at the Glenwood Springs Demon Volleyball Invitational to open the season in September.
Chelsea Self/Post Independent

Garfield County will have three delegations in the mix for the Colorado high school girls volleyball championships — Glenwood Springs, Roaring Fork and Rifle — as Class 3A and 4A regional assignments were announced on Monday.

In the 4A tournament, Glenwood Springs enters as the No. 22 seed, playing in Region 3 along with the No. 3 seed and regional host Windsor and No. 34 Riverdale Ridge.

Games are set to take place Saturday, with the 12 regional champions advancing to next week’s state tournament in Denver.

The Demons concluded the season 16-6 overall and went 4-6 in the 4A Western Slope League, finishing fourth out of six teams.

A testament to the league’s strength this season, all six teams are headed to the 36-team regional round, led by regular season league champion Eagle Valley (17-6, 10-0), which comes in as the No. 10 seed and will host Region 10 in Gypsum on Saturday.

Second-place Palisade made it as the No. 14 seed, followed by Steamboat Springs at No. 18, Battle Mountain at No. 31 and Summit at No. 35.

Glenwood Springs closed out the regular season this past weekend going 2-2 at the Coal Ridge Tournament in neighboring New Castle. The Demons lost 2-1 to the host Titans on Friday, followed by a 2-0 win over Pagosa Springs and splitting the Saturday matchups, winning 2-0 over James Irwin and losing to league foe Palisade, 2-0.

The Demons head into the postseason having endured a midseason coaching change, with Scott Nykerk taking the reins of a young but experienced Glenwood team that went 4-5 through the final stretch, but was in it for every contest.

Senior outside hitter Siri Henderson leads the team with 2.6 kills per set, followed closely by juniors Rilyn Goluba with 2.1 and Tess Goscha with 1.9. Junior middle hitter Bailey Winder has a hitting percentage of 0.246.

Other stats leaders for the Demons are senior, Mattéa Enewold with 30 total blocks on the season, junior, Zoey Hyatt-Worley with 3.2 digs per set, Goluba with 33 serving aces for the season, and Henderson with 31 aces.

The top seed in the 4A tournament is Palmer Ridge, with Thompson Valley seeded No. 2.

Rams lead 3A contingent

Roaring Fork senior Bella Brown looks to hit the ball over Rifle defenders senior Cara McMillen, left, and junior Kristyn Mentink during Rifle’s 3-1 win over the Rams in Carbondale earlier this season.
John Stroud/Post Independent

In the 3A regionals, Roaring Fork enters as the No. 26 seed in the 36-team field. The Rams are set to play Region 11 host Resurrection Christian, seeded No. 11, along with No. 14 The Vanguard School.

The Rams concluded the regular season at 14-9 overall and went 4-3 in the 3A WSL, finishing third behind league champion Delta (the No. 13 seed and a regional host), and Rifle, which finished 13-10 and 5-2 in league, but had the lower power ranking coming into the postseason. 

Rifle enters regionals as the No. 31 seed, playing in Region 6 against host No. 6 University and No. 19 Bayfield.

Roaring Fork, coached by Karen Crownhart, is led by senior outside hitter Bella Brown, averaging 2.3 kills per set and junior Ruby Denning with 2.1 kills per set and a hitting percentage of 0.154. Sophomore, Erica Crownhart is averaging 4.7 digs per set and has 31 serving aces on the season.

Rifle, coached by Julio Aguirre, is led by junior outside hitter, Brooke Allen, with 2.4 kills per set and senior middle hitter, Cora McMillen, with a hitting percentage of 0.250. Junior, Crystal Santana, finished the regular season with 39 blocks, junior, Madelyn Berglund is averaging 8.8 digs per set and junior setter Kristyn Mentink had 37 serving aces. 

Also representing the 3A WSL in the regional round will be No. 13 Delta, this year’s league champions, No. 27 Moffat County and No. 33 Aspen. The top seed in the 3A tournament is Lamar. Eaton is seeded No. 2

Coal Ridge, Grand Valley conclude seasons 

The Coal Ridge High School volleyball team ended the season on a high note, going 3-1 in the Titans home tournament.

Wins came against Glenwood Springs, 2-1, Pagosa Springs 2-0 and Battle Mountain, 2-1, with the only tournament loss to James Irwin, 2-0.  

The Titans, under longtime head coach Aimee Gerber, turned things around late in the season, winning four of five down the stretch to finish at 5-18 overall with a 1-6 league mark.

Coal Ridge honored five seniors, Aceleigh Porter, Justice Segovia, Mikayla Cheney, Ashlynn Guccini and Emma Morgan

Grand Valley also played its final match of the season on Saturday, losing 3-0 to West Grand to finish at 2-19 overall and 2-12 in the 2A WSL.

Seniors who played their last games in a Cardinals jersey were Naomi Pena, Elle Gardner, Landyn Teter, Linkin McCormick and Caitlin Strong.

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