Titan spikers thwart Rams comeback
PEACH VALLEY – After losing games one and two, the Roaring Fork volleyball team started to piece together a comeback. Coal Ridge didn’t want any part of it, however, as the Titans kept their cool, hung on for a game-three victory and beat the Rams 3-0 (25-13, 25-17, 25-23) on Tuesday night.Coal Ridge dominated the first two games, with Sierra Grove setting perfect balls for Chloe Nelson and Callie Schlegel to slam down. The Titans were smart with their attack, with Nelson and Schlegel trading off between hammering kills and tapping in bloopers to catch the Rams off guard.”We have been working on that, so I am glad it is finally showing in the game,” said Coal Ridge head coach Denise Greene. “Tonight they did a great job of making great decisions and just knowing what is open and trying not to make a mistake when they need to just put it in play.”Things changed on the other side of the net in game three, as the Rams came alive. After taking a 3-1 lead, Roaring Fork was going to make Coal Ridge work for the win. The score went back and forth all the way until the game was locked at 17. Then the Rams turned it on. With Joey Clingan serving, the Rams started their comeback. Clingan dropped in two aces and Celeste Commings was setting up beautiful balls for Landon Garvik to spike down onto the Titans’ side of the court. Just like that, the Rams were up 22-17.Garvik added another block to put Roaring Fork up 23-19.”It was a really, really good op for us to be able to use all that we have worked on this year with our mental game,” said Roaring Fork head coach Sara Hyatt. “Those kind of things are the things I am happy to see them be able to come back with – being able to pick out little things and just drive and play our kind of ball.Then Titan Mini Kanakaraj answered with two aces, tying the game at 23 and deflating the Rams’ hopes for a comeback. Coal Ridge, who lost to Olathe 3-1 before beating Gunnison 3-2 over the weekend, has now won two straight.”This year we are just working on being mentally focused and staying really calm and controlling the game instead of the atmosphere controlling us,” said Nelson, whose four kills in game two left the crowd discussing how fast they might register on a radar gun. “It is definitely working because now we are 5-2 in (the Class 3A Western Slope) League, and we are kicking butt.”Coal Ridge, which is 8-4 overall, will next host Gunnison on Friday in its homecoming match. The Titans will look to make it three in a row, all while eyeing a goal they set at the beginning of the season.”I have mixed a few things up and I think we were off a little bit, but I think we are back into it and they know what their roles are and that the team is the most important thing,” Greene said. “That’s our goal – to win league. and we still have a shot. And to get to districts and out of districts to regionals, and we still have a shot.”Roaring Fork (1-4 WSL, 3-6 overall) will also play in its homecoming game on Friday, hosting the Skiers of Aspen.
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