Thu Sep 12th, 2019
Special to the Drum
Though far from pretty, a three-game sweep of Ridgway did what Ignacio hoped it would do: Bump the Volleycats into the CHSAANow.com Class 2A rankings’ top ten.
Monday morning, Sept. 9, it was revealed IHS had risen from the top ‘Others Receiving Votes’ team to No. 7 prior to the squad’s 9/12 trip to Mancos and 9/14 home match versus Ouray—after which the ’Cats could very well stand 3-0 against the full 2A/1A San Juan Basin League and 5-0 overall.
If mistakes made Thursday evening, Sept. 5, against upset-minded RHS get satisfactorily cleaned up, such undefeated status will be a much easier goal to attain, but the ’Cats won’t be overlooking either MHS or OHS (the Lady Trojans, remember, defended their home court 25-23, 25-14, 25-19 last fall, not two full days after the Lady Jays had left IHS Gymnasium surprise 25-15, 25-16, 25-22 victors).
After nearly allowing Game 1 to slip their grip before winning 25-23, Ignacio quickly climbed out of a 5-1 hole in Game 2 to eventually take a 10-9 advantage and gradually increase it to as great as 20-14 en route to prevailing 25-18.
And inspired by some vicious Makayla Howell serving after the Lady Demons pulled level at 12-all in Game 3, Ignacio strung together 11 consecutive points—beginning with a cross-court kill by sophomore Alexis Pontine—to go up 23-12 and coasted to a victory-clinching 25-16 margin—finalized by Howell tipping match point out of reach of Ridgway’s Jenna Brown.
Howell, a senior, finished with eight kills in 11 attacks with only two errors—a .545 hitting percentage. Pontine downed ten in 19 tries (with just three errors) for a .368 mark, as junior setter Marisa Carmenoros distributed 23 assists.
Freshman Grace Gonzales matched Howell’s eight kills, but finished a -.056 due to nine errors in her 18 tries, while junior Charlize Valdez put down five kills at a .077 rate.
IHS (3-0, 1-0 2A/1A SJBL) fired 18 aces in the road win, led by four each from Pontine and Valdez, with Howell and freshman Laci Brunson each contributing three. Defensively, Howell booked a team-leading seven digs with Brunson logging five and Carmenoros three.
CHSAANOW.COM CLASS 2A VOLLEYBALL POLL (9/9)
1.Denver Christian, 2.Limon, 3.Wiggins, 4.Greeley Union Colony, 5.Meeker, 6.Yuma, 7.IGNACIO, 8.Swink, 9.Ault Highland, 10.Hoehne. Others receiving votes—Simla, Fowler, Sedgwick County (Julesburg/Ovid Revere), Lafayette Dawson School, Kremmling West Grand, Evergreen Clear Creek, Rye, Akron, Walsenburg John Mall, Lyons, Telluride, Hayden.