Volleyball: Roaring Fork tops Aspen in four sets
It took a couple of sets before the Aspen High School volleyball team got it going against visiting Roaring Fork on Tuesday, but it didn’t have enough steam to close out the match in a 3-1 loss inside the AHS gymnasium.
“We played this one as a learning match. We played real aggressively,” Aspen coach Matt Bergdahl said. “Roaring Fork has an amazing serving game, and that really put us on our heels the whole match. My hats off to them — they serve tough.”
Roaring Fork (7-5 overall) opened its season with a 3-2 win against Aspen in Carbondale, and opened Tuesday’s match with a confident bounce that foretold of another win.
The Rams rolled through the first set; they led 7-2 and never looked back en route to a 25-15 win.
“I’m super excited. The girls are coming together, and they are a completely different team than they were last year,” said Roaring Fork coach Donna Bratcher about a team that last year lost twice as many as it won. “You can see it on the court. They are a lot more confident in themselves. They are building, and we are going to try and take it as far as we can.”
Roaring Fork took the second set, again 25-15, even after it fell behind 4-1. With the third set came a change in momentum; Aspen jumped out to a 5-0 lead, the hot start carrying it to a 25-17 set win.
“We put them on their heels with our serving,” Bergdahl said of the success in the third set. “It was one of those matches not unlike a tennis match where whoever is really nailing their first serve is going to take the match.”
It looked for a time like Aspen was going to force a decisive fifth set. The Skiers held a 17-15 lead in the fourth set, trailing 2-1 in the match, but a 4-0 run by the Rams pushed them over the top. Roaring Fork won the final set 25-19 to take the match in four sets.
“I don’t know why, but they are so good at the comeback,” Bratcher said of the Rams. “Aspen, they gave us that fourth game, and we were hoping to take it in three. But like I said, they were definitely a challenge, but those girls can come back from anything at this point.”
The Rams are off until Saturday when they host Gunnison for homecoming.
Aspen, now 3-3 overall, will host Coal Ridge on Thursday.
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Amid hundreds of cleat-footed little leaguers casually gathered along the first baseline, the glare of parents’ sunglasses deflecting the early morning sun, coach Troy Phillips began a trip down memory lane.