Coal Ridge spikers give undefeated Gunnison a battle |

Coal Ridge spikers give undefeated Gunnison a battle

PEACH VALLEY – Volleyball has become less stressful physically and more of a mental challenge for Coal Ridge when facing more experienced teams.”I know they’re always capable (of winning),” said Titan head coach Denise Greene after the Titans gave undefeated Gunnison a tougher-than-expected battle, falling 3-1 (25-20, 18-25, 14-25, 13-25) to the Cowboys. Gunnison is 11-0 in the Class 3A Western Slope League, 16-0 overall. “I expect them to play like they did in the first game. That’s the team I see in practice consistently,” Greene said. “I know we’re capable. But mentally, it’s tough for them because the other team’s lineup is senior, senior, senior.”Fittingly, it was one of Gunnison’s four senior starters who reversed the Cowboys fortunes after the Titans captured game one.Jenna Browder scored all three of the aces she had in the game as part of an 11-0 run Gunnison had in game two. The margin was too much for Coal Ridge, despite a late five-point run.A spike by Jessica Needham narrowed Gunnison’s lead to 22-15. That was the closest the Titans even came in the 1-1 match evener.After exchanging the lead three times early in the next game, Coal Ridge’s spirits wilted, along with a 4-4 tie, on a rash of Titan unforced errors.Taking advantage of the miscues, Gunnison scored seven of the next nine points, and never led by less than five points in a 25-14 win, which put the Cowboys ahead for good.Coal Ridge never held a lead the rest of the way. With the loss, the Titans fall to 2-10 in league and 5-12 on the year as they finish up the regular season this week at Hotchkiss Saturday.

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