Craig Down two games to none Friday night to visiting Montrose High School, you would have been hard pressed to find a single frown on any of the Moffat County girl's faces.
"I told the girls that in volleyball, it's the first team to win three out of five," head coach Brianna Montgomery said, "It's not who wins the first two."
The message was loud and clear to her players, as they rallied to tie the match at two sets apiece, before eventually falling, 18-25, 17-25, 28-26, 25-21,12-15.
Refusing to accept defeat, the Bulldogs fought back, capturing the third set in a seesaw battle that saw Moffat County win by two points.
"We knew that we could come back," senior Amy Dilldine said. "We were more enthusiastic in the third. We actually relaxed, and decided to have a good time."
The good times were contagious as the Bulldogs stole the momentum in that pivotal set and rode it to a fourth set victory, tying the match.
"There is no quit in these girls," Montgomery said. "It was really intense. The girls have been working on their mental toughness, and it showed up when they tied it."
Tied again at 12 in the fifth set, Montrose pulled away with three consecutive points to win.
"Our girls showed a lot of determination," Indians coach Shane Forrest said. "I told them heading into that fifth game to put it on the court with intensity. They sure did."
Senior Markie Workman led the Bulldog attack, tallying 18 blocks and 10 kills. Dilldine contributed with 10 blocks and eight kills. Meghan Innes totaled 32 assists and Angie Charchalis led with 19 digs.
"The girls played outstanding," said Montgomery. "The way they fought back was incredible. It doesn't feel like a loss to me."
The Bulldogs (3-2, 1-2 WSL) will rise early this morning for a 1 p.m. match at Battle Mountain High School.
"We have to catch a bus at 6 a.m." Montgomery said. "Three games in three days is a grueling stretch. We'll be happy come Sunday."