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Demon volleyball highlights homecoming action

It’s homecoming week for area high schools.

The crowds should be bigger and the fans louder. The players will undoubtedly feel a little extra urgency to put on a good show.

While some schools put very winnable games on their schedule for homecoming, the Glenwood Springs High School volleyball team faces its stiffest competition of the season this week.



The Demons, ranked fifth in Class 4A in the Rocky Mountain News poll, take on No. 7-ranked Steamboat Springs tonight and Palisade, another Western Slope League power, Saturday.

Combined, the three teams have one loss in league play and are the only teams in the 4A WSL with winning records. Glenwood is 4-0 (10-0) overall), Steamboat is 6-0 (10-1) and Palisade is 5-1 (9-3).



The undefeated Demons will get their toughest test of the season tonight, putting their power game against that of Steamboat.

Glenwood’s main outside hitters, Amber Sutherland and Alicia Hays, will need to navigate around, and try to block, one of the top players in the league in the Sailors’ Katie Carter.

Carter, listed at 6-foot-1, has already committed to NCAA Division I volleyball powerhouse UCLA.

“What we want to do is rattle their offense and take her out of the game,” Glenwood coach Michelle Guillot said. “We want to make it so it’s difficult for them to set to her all the time.”

Much of the Demons’ success will depend on the play of Bridget Roseman and the other defensive specialists responsible for keeping the kills off the floor.

“We’ve been concentrating this week on being prepared to dig everything and making good plays off what we can dig up,” Guillot said. “Our diggers love to dig and live to dig.”

The game begins at roughly 7 p.m., following the junior varsity contest.

Saturday’s game against Palisade will also likely have postseason implications. The Bulldogs are coming off a 15-7, 15-4 victory over Rifle Tuesday.

In other local volleyball action, Rifle (0-6, 0-10) has an opportunity to climb out of last place in the WSL against a winless Delta squad at 7 p.m. tonight.

Cross country

The No. 3-ranked Glenwood Springs cross country squad hosts its only home meet of the season Saturday. The race begins at 10 a.m. at Two Rivers Park and will see the return of Marco Salmen, the Demons’ top runner, who has been out all season with a stress fracture in his left tibia.

“Marco will run the race, but he’s going to do it at a slow pace,” Glenwood cross country coach Joe Mollica said. “He’s not allowed to go 100 percent.”

The field includes Rifle, Montrose, Fruita, Hotchkiss, Cedaredge, Skyline, Delta and Grand Junction.

“Montrose is a little ahead of us right now,” Mollica said. “But the kids have been training really hard, they’re just really self-motivated.”

The 5-kilometer course record is 17 minutes, 3 seconds. Former Demon Chas Salmen, who now runs for Duke University, set the mark.

There will also be a 2-mile middle school race and a 5K citizens/coaches race at 9 a.m. The fee for the citizens race is $10 and a pair of old running shoes that will be repaired and donated to needy runners in Africa.

Football

Of course, homecoming wouldn’t be homecoming without the Friday night football game.

Glenwood, Roaring Fork and Rifle all have home games Friday night with Glenwood and Rifle beginning at 7 p.m. and Roaring Fork at 7:30 p.m.

Glenwood will try to keep the momentum going from the second half of last week’s game against Moffat County. The Demons fell behind 27-6 in the first half before shutting out Moffat in the second half and drawing within a touchdown before time ran out.

Glenwood (0-1, 2-2) faces winless Montezuma-Cortez (0-1, 0-3) at 7 p.m. at Stubler Memorial Field in a 3A Western Slope Conference contest.

The Demons will have their choice in quarterbacks against Montezuma-Cortez. Sophomore Chris Toler took over quarterback duties from junior Mike Hoban during last week’s game and showed well. Just as important, Hoban notched a pair of touchdowns after moving to running back.

A win Friday would surpass the Demons’ win total of last season when the team finished 2-7.

Undefeated Rifle (1-0, 5-0), the state’s No. 1-ranked 3A team, plays host to Delta (0-0, 1-3). It’s Delta’s conference-opener and the Panthers are coming off a 49-0 drubbing of Battle Mountain.

Rifle is also coming off a big win. The Bears downed perennial power Palisade 34-31 in overtime on the road last week.

The Roaring Fork Rams also came out on top of an overtime contest last week, beating Hotchkiss 21-20. This week the Rams (2-0, 3-1) face Valley rival Basalt (1-1, 1-3) in a 2A Western Slope Conference contest.

Soccer

With victories over Battle Mountain and Steamboat Springs last week, the Glenwood Springs high school soccer team now sits alone atop the 4A WSL standings.

Now Glenwood has a chance to give itself a little cushion on that seat.

The Demons travel to Rifle (2-2, 3-5-1) today for a 4 p.m. start during the Bears’ homecoming week. On Saturday, Glenwood hosts to last-place Palisade (1-4, 3-5).

Rifle plays another home game Saturday against Steamboat Springs (3-1, 5-4).

Softball

The Rifle Bears (2-0, 9-6) softball team, coming off a 15-1 victory over Eagle Valley, faces another pair of nonleague opponents this week. The Bears host Montrose today at 4 p.m. and Grand Junction Saturday at 10 a.m. at Deerfield Park.


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