Prep volleyball: Titans too tough for Bulldogs
PEACH VALLEY — The first set went as planned for Coal Ridge High School’s volleyball team against Moffat County on Thursday night. The Bulldogs made sure the rest of the match didn’t turn out that way.
Britni Allen and Kaitlyn Detlefsen each finished with a match-high nine kills for the Titans, who held off a scrappy Bulldogs team for a 25-7, 25-15, 25-22 Class 3A nonleague victory at the Coal Ridge High gym.
“We’ve played a lot of hard teams this year,” Detlefsen, a junior, said. “That’s not to say that Moffat County isn’t a good team, because they are. But all of the 4A and 5A teams that we’ve played so far has helped us a lot.”
Indeed, that experience at the beginning of the season made a difference Thursday for the Titans (6-5 overall) who have won three consecutive matches. That includes a come-from-behind, five-set victory over Class 4A Eagle Valley on Tuesday, one of the seven teams Coal Ridge has played that reside in a higher classification.
It was the Bulldogs (3-8, 0-1 3A WSL), however, who were mounting a comeback in the Titans’ home gym. They rebounded from a drubbing in the first set to put together substantial runs in the second and third sets and put the Titans in a pressure situation.
All the experience from those previous opponents, however, helped Coal Ridge pull away.
“It’s really nice to see five different people step up and contribute,” Coal Ridge coach Scott Black said. “That shows that we’re not just relying on one person, and playing against tough opponents like we did has helped us do that.”
Kaitlyn Harlow and Bailey Davis each added six kills, Nicole Mooney chipped in five kills and senior setter Maggie Bell helped with that distribution, tallying 22 assists.
Maddie Jo Duzik finished with three kills and three stuff-blocks to go with a three-kill, three-ace, three-block performance from Morgan Lawton for the Bulldogs, who trailed by as much as 12-1 in the first set and never recovered. Moffat County rallied in the second, though, as a pair of aces from Lawton were part of a 7-0 run that gave the Bulldogs an 8-4 lead.
Moffat County took a 14-11 lead on a stuff-block from Lawton, but errors by the Bulldogs and strong play up front for Coal Ridge each played a part in the 14-1 run the Titans used to close out the set.
In the third set, the Bulldogs again held tough and used a 5-1 run down the stretch to pull within 23-22 on kills from Lawton and Brittany Rothermond. Harlow, however, floored a bump over the net by Alex Samuelson to put the Titans at match point, and a stuff block from Mooney on the next point sealed it.
The Bulldogs continue league play on Saturday when they host Aspen. Coal Ridge will open league play at home against Gunnison at noon and Olathe at 5 p.m., also on Saturday.
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Area prep basketball teams begin their 2019-20 campaigns with tournament action both home and away this weekend.