By ELWOOD K. SHELTON
Daily Press writer
It's not whether you win or lose, but how you play the game.
And for seniors Amber Sanchez and Katie Telfer the game of volleyball was played so hard the 14 loses on the season didn't taint the Western Slope Conference's (WSC) coaches' opinion of the girls. Each girl was named to an All-Conference position, Sanchez to first team and Telfer to second.
The two seniors were the driving force behind the Lady Bulldogs offensive attack in nearly every game, with one of the two always leading the team in scoring.
Though Sanchez and Telfer share the passion for offense, they approach the game from different perspectives.
"Katie was always one of our most vocal girls on the court, and took on a team leadership role this season that's why she was our captain," coach Vicki Haddan said. "Amber, on the other hand, wasn't as vocal but was as much a competitor and was always out for the win."
Sanchez earned first team All-Conference honors behind a 99 kill season. A season that saw her struggle early on, but ripen to a imposing force at the net by the end.
Her main struggle has been gaining consistency, but this was much of the Lady Bulldogs' problem, Haddan said. By the time the season was at an end, she was wracking up games with more than 10 to 15 kills in them.
To Sanchez the biggest game came at the end of the regular season, when the Lady 'Dogs faced the nearly perfect Glenwood Springs Demons (14-5), and defeated them in three games.
"It just proved to me that we were a good team when we played together," she said. "It's just that we had some problems getting our game out onto the court it wasn't there a lot of the season."
Telfer was named to second team All-Conference behind 64 kills on the season. She traded places as the leading scorer with Sanchez all season, but she traded more than just that.
At the end of the season she traded places with senior Ashliegh Gregg and made a move from inside-hitter to outside. She admits she was tentative about the move at first, but outside hitter made a better fit for her.
"It came down to what was best for the team, and me moving to the outside was best for the team," Telfer said.
For both girls the All-Conference honors mean they are some of the best players in the conference, but both said they would trade it for one thing a trip to the regional tournament. The Lady Bulldogs made the district tournament in Cortez by beating Battle Mountain in a pig tail game, but once there, didn't make it out of pool play.
"The honors are great, but they don't mean as much as having a good season," Telfer said. "I would trade in All-Conference in a second if we could have made it to regionals."