Glenwood volleyball drops final 3 sets to Montrose
A first-set win Saturday inside Chavez-Spencer Gymnasium for the Glenwood Springs Demons girls volleyball team appeared to put the Demons in great position to extend their winning streak to six matches. The visiting Montrose Indians had other ideas, winning the next 3 sets to claim a 3-1 win on the road in non-league action, snapping Glenwood’s winning streak at 5 straight matches.
Looking to power through what has been a long week for the Demon volleyball team, Glenwood came out firing in the first set, battling back from an early 8-4 deficit to tie the set up at 11-11 on a kill by senior Kaitlyn Johnson. From there, the two teams traded points leading to a 15-15 tie before Glenwood took over the set at 17-16 on a serving error by the Indians.
A well-placed tip from senior Shanik Zambrano made it 19-17 Glenwood before the Demons stretched the lead to 21-18, forcing a Montrose timeout.
Following the quick stoppage, Glenwood put the game away as junior Kiah Larson recorded an ace and senior Emily Nilsson tipped a shot over the net into the middle of the Montrose defense for game point, giving Glenwood a key 25-22 win.
After that though, it was mostly all Montrose.
Opening up the second set, Johnson recorded a kill to give the Demons an early 1-0 lead, but that would be the final lead of the set for the Demons as Montrose pulled away to take an 11-4 lead on a block and a kill from senior Madison Hickert. Glenwood tried to battle back, thanks to an ace from Larson that made it 12-8, but a block and a thunderous kill from senior Madison Satterly opened things up for the Indians at 15-11.
“I think a lot of it was their coach switching things up and forcing us to do something different,” said Kehau Rust, Glenwood’s third-year head coach. “Our girls, it’s been a long week, and I think it kind of started to show. We had really good moments showing good heart and hustle, but then we had moments of about 70 percent effort and not talking. I think a lot of that has to do with being tired, and then we weren’t able to push through being tired.”
Glenwood junior sophomores Charlotte Olszewski and Kenzie Winder combined for a huge block at the net a few points later to make it 16-13, but a tip from Hickert and a combination block at the net by Hickert and senior Caraline Burwell sent the Indians to a 25-16 win, knotting the match up at 1-1.
In the pivotal third set, the two teams traded points back and forth throughout, highlighted by a huge dig on a Satterly spike by Larson, leading to a key Glenwood point to tie the set at 10-10. Larson’s dig seemed to ignite the Demons as Montrose was called for 4 hits on the ensuing point before a kill from Olszewski made it 13-10 Glenwood. Montrose battled back though as Satterly spiked one to the floor and sophomore Madison Matoush recorded an ace to make it 15-13 Indians.
“We knew about her [Satterly] coming in; we watched film on her,” Rust said. “We have young people in that position defending her, and I think they learned a lot today and fought hard. But when you have a big hitter like that you’re going up against, you just congratulate them.”
The Demons later pulled to within one point at 19-18, but the Indians scored 6 straight points from there, highlight by a kill from Burwell and a tip from Hickert to go up 2-1, thanks to the 25-18 win.
In the final set of the day, the Demons left it all out on the court, combining with the Indians for a thrilling fourth set.
Down 2-1 in the match, Glenwood came out determined, racing to a 5-1 lead thanks to a kill from Zambrano and a pair of kills from Winder.
“As a young player, it’s terrifying in a do-or-die situation,” Rust said. “But her competitiveness and her true athleticism is why we go to her; we know she isn’t going to hesitate on it and give it 100 percent.”
Glenwood then stretched the lead to 9-3, but Montrose came right back thanks to 3 straight aces from sophomore Kelsey Rocco and a kill from Burwell, making it a 9-8 set.
A tip by Larson ended Montrose’s run, making it 10-8 Glenwood, but the Indians didn’t blink, fighting all the way back to make it 18-17 Glenwood on a kill by Rocco.
The Demons then responded by stretched the lead to 21-18 thanks to a combination block by Nilsson and Winder, but Montrose stormed back to make it a 24-24 game on a thunderous kill by Satterly.
Winder then recorded a pair of kills sandwiched around a kill by Satterly, but the Demons couldn’t overcome Montrose’s play as Hickert and Burwell combined for a block at the net on Zambrano, giving the Indians a 28-26 set win and a 3-1 match win on the road.
The loss drops Glenwood to 8-3 (4-0 in 4A WSL) on the year. In the loss, Zambrano led the Demons with 11 kills, while Johnson added 8 kills and 9 digs. Nilson chipped in with 5 kills, 4 blocks and 14 assists, while junior Reese Goluba added 17 assists. Olszewski added 6 kills and 7 blocks.
The Demons travel to Summit Tuesday for a 4A WSL matchup with the Tigers at 6:30 p.m. before then traveling to Palisade Thursday for a big league battle with the Bulldogs.
“Today was a huge learning day for us,” Rust said. “The girls know what they need to work on; I think this was a huge test for us going into that Palisade game because it shows us where we struggled and where we need to improve.”
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Glenwood Springs High School’s senior soccer standout Celia Scruton is set to continue her career with the Evergreen State College Geoducks in Olympia, Washington.