Craig Saturday's much-anticipated matchup with Steamboat Springs ended on a sour note for the Bulldogs.
The Moffat County varsity girls volleyball team lost to their rival in a hard-fought, five-game match, 27-25, 25-27, 25-19, 19-25, 16-18.
"It was a really tough match," head coach Brianna Montgomery said. "The girls played really hard. I'm disappointed though. We lost our rivalry game."
The Bulldogs led until late in the second game. The Sailors rallied to take their first lead, 24-23, and held on to win the second game by two.
In the third game, the Bulldogs came out with more intensity, taking control early and winning by six.
Down two games to one, Steamboat rebounded in their must-win situation, controlling play and pulling themselves back to tie the match at two games apiece.
"We did what we needed to do to get back in it," Sailors coach Wendy Hall said. "We just settled down, and were able to come back.
"Heading into the fifth game anything can happen."
The deciding game was a back-and-forth battle with both teams exchanging the lead. After a save by Moffat County off of the basketball backboard helped tie the game at 14, the Bulldogs took the lead when Markie Workman blocked a Sailor tip-volley at the net.
Tied again at 16, Steamboat pulled away, the final point coming off a kill by the Sailors Kacey Bull.
"They got us back on our heels," Montgomery said. "We didn't move well, and we just couldn't pull it out. We were sloppy."
Moffat County tallied 41 kills as a team, led by Workman's 10. Meghan Innes led the team with 31 assists, and Workman led in blocks with nine.
After the match, Workman wanted to continue playing.
"It was a great match," she said. "We want to keep playing. We're not upset. We have three more games this week, and we can't dwell on it. We'll get them back at their house next time."
John Vandelinder can be reached at 824-7031, ext. 211, or firstname.lastname@example.org