Diaz half of ‘Grass Smash’ champs

Ignacio's Miel Diaz (23) blocks a Dolores dump
Ignacio's Miel Diaz (23) blocks a Dolores dump during road action in the Volleycats' 2012 season.
Joel Priest | Special to the Drum

Catching some rays while making plays, Ignacio sophomore Miel Diaz, a prime focal point for Thad Cano’s Volleycats this fall, made the most of a weekend trip to Farmington, N.M., as she paired with Bayfield Middle School eighth-grader Sydney Gabbard to win the Girls’ 16U Division title at Piedra Vista High School’s third annual “Grass Smash” Doubles Tournament, June 22-23.

Playing outdoors on PVHS’s soccer practice field, the duo was guaranteed a minimum four matches — at least one, of course, in the single-elimination final bracket — and truly maximized all theirs.

Bayfield freshman Maddi Foutz and Montezuma-Cortez sophomore Laurel Chappell prevailed in 18U, mid-schoolers Emily Bauer of Bayfield and Kate Treinen of Cortez captured the 14U, PV head coach Ron Becker paired with Lady Panther senior pupil Samantha Sofka to win the Co-Ed class, and the competitive Women’s Open title went to Adams State University sophomore Katherine Rifilato (BHS Class of ’12) and California State-Sacramento soph Sloan Lovett (Durango High ’12).

Splitting her spring semester athletically between Lady Bobcats Soccer and club-level volleyball, Diaz — along with Gabbard — played for Four Corners Volleyball Club’s 14-Colleen (Keresey) team. Cano, meanwhile, mentored one of FCVBC’s two 15s during the similar January-April time span.

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