Volleycats make a quick meal of Mustangs

Ignacio sophomore Lexy Young (6) smashes a kill over Nucla’s Keelee Redd (4) Saturday, Oct. 5, inside IHS Gymnasium. Young’s recent return from an early-season injury gives the Volleycats yet another attacking option.
With sophomore Alexis Pontine (15) observing, Ignacio junior libero Ebonee Gomez (14) sends a defensive free-ball over Saturday, Oct. 5, against Nucla inside IHS Gymnasium.
Ignacio junior Charlize Valdez (3) goes up to block Simla junior Mercedes Smith (6) during the Sept. 28 SHS Invitational. The Volleycats lost to the meet-hosting team, ranked No. 8 in Class 2A at the time, but ended the day with two victories – setting themselves up well to resume 2A/1A San Juan Basin League play.
Joel Priest | Special to the Drum
Joel Priest | Special to the Drum
Joel Priest | Special to the Drum

Second pass through SJBL’s 2A side awaits IHS

Breaking loose with a five-point run, forcing opposing co-head coaches Sheri Carr-LaCosse and Debbie Wytulka into burning a timeout down 14-7, Ignacio’s varsity volleyball team all but predicted Nucla’s Oct. 5 visit to IHS Gymnasium would be a swift one when the Volleycats closed out Game 1 of the best-of-five match on an 8-0 burst punctuated by an over-pass kill by sophomore Lexy Young and back-to-back aces by junior Charlize Valdez.

Ignacio sophomore Monica Lucero (11) fires up a serve against Nucla during C-team action Saturday, Oct. 5, inside IHS Gymnasium. IHS began the day’s 2A/1A San Juan Basin League tripleheader with a wild 32-30, 25-17 win over the Lady Mustangs.

And with Valdez totaling five gems, freshman talent Grace Gonzales contributing another four, and the ’Cats as a whole able to break the 1A Lady Mustangs from the service line, IHS had little difficulty in recovering from a tense loss at 1A Dove Creek not even 48 hours earlier.

“The entire team’s service game was amazing,” eighth-year skipper Thad Cano said.  “We served both short and deep serves, and really got (Nucla) out of system.  The girls were on fire today in a full team effort and I’m just beaming with how they translated what they learned in practice to today’s game.”

Gonzales paced Ignacio offensively with eight kills while Young, recently cleared from an early-season injury which ultimately compromised her dual-sport (she’d begun the fall suiting up for both IHS Cross-Country and IHS Volleyball, like Valdez) status, added seven in a 25-13, 25-16, 25-12 sweep.

Junior libero Ebonee Gomez and junior setter Marisa Carmenoros each recorded a team-leading nine digs defensively, while Valdez logged seven.

Moved up in IHS’ schedule from an initial Oct. 19 date, the ’Cats ventured west and north to DCHS for their first action since going 2-1 (with a four-game win over Oak Creek Soroco, part of the 2A/1A Western Slope League, and a five-gamer over 2A Santa Fe reps Hoehne) at the Sept. 28 Simla Invitational.

Ignacio sophomore Yllana Howe (2) leaps to deflect the shot of Nucla’s Lisa Sutherland (6) during C-team action Saturday, Oct. 5, inside IHS Gymnasium. IHS began the day’s 2A/1A San Juan Basin League tripleheader with a wild 32-30, 25-17 win over the Lady Mustangs.

With both squads still owning top-10 status in their respective CHSAANow.com polls (Ignacio checked in at No. 10 in 2A; the Lady Bulldogs were No. 10 in 1A), the match was expected to be tight and ended up being exactly that, though Dove Creek held on to win 22-25, 25-15, 29-27, 25-23.

Statistics were still unreported at press time.

Having improved to 3-4 against the full 2A/1A San Juan Basin League and 7-6 overall at the time by defeating Nucla (2-11 overall, 1-5 SJBL), Ignacio was to next travel to Telluride on Saturday, Oct. 12, for a key rematch (THS prevailed 25-21, 25-21, 15-25, 21-25, 15-11 inside IHS Gymnasium on Sept. 21) impacting the league’s 2A-level title chase.

In the wake of Ignacio’s loss to DCHS, plus the Julesburg/Ovid Revere co-op called Sedgwick County falling in five to unranked Haxtun, the Lady Miners crept into the Oct. 7 week-starting 2A rankings at No. 10.

Results from the Volleycats’ test Tuesday, Oct. 8, versus Mancos—also a rematch, with the Lady Jays having won 20-25, 25-21, 18-25, 25-19, 15-10 at home in the teams’ 9/12 rumble—were unavailable at press time.




1.Denver Christian, 2.Greeley Union Colony Prep, 3.Wiggins, 4.Fowler, 5.Limon, 6.Meeker, 7.Kremmling West Grand, 8.Simla, 9.Rye, 10.Telluride.  Others Receiving Votes—Sedgwick County [Julesburg/Ovid Revere], Dolores, IGNACIO, Lafayette Dawson School, Swink, Ault Highland.



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