Jessica Matthews, left, a Moffat County High School junior, keeps the ball alive while sophomore Annie Sadvar backs her up during Saturday's match against Delta High School. The Bulldogs beat the Panthers in three games.

Photo by Shawn McHugh

Jessica Matthews, left, a Moffat County High School junior, keeps the ball alive while sophomore Annie Sadvar backs her up during Saturday's match against Delta High School. The Bulldogs beat the Panthers in three games.

MCHS' Lauren Roberts celebrates birthday with win against Delta

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MCHS senior Natasha Romney spikes a ball during the second set of a match against the Delta High School Panthers on Saturday at the MCHS gymnasium. The Lady Bulldogs won the match 3-0.

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Lauren Roberts spikes the ball past Panthers blockers in the first set of Saturday's match-up.

Scores

Moffat County High School girls varsity volleyball box score vs. Delta:

School/First Game/Second Game/Third Game/Final

Moffat County/25/25/25/3

Delta/21/19/15/0

Lauren Roberts didn't keep her birthday cheer all to herself.

Instead, she shared the joy with her Moffat County High School varsity volleyball teammates as they celebrated a 3-0 win against Delta High School on Saturday.

"We won last year on my birthday, too," Roberts said. "It was a good day all around because we broke our losing streak."

Roberts, who turned 17, and seniors Tasha Romney and Jordan Maneotis proved to be too much for Delta when they attacked the net in MCHS' home gym.

Roberts said the win was a better present than her performance.

"I played pretty good," she said. "I don't think it was my best game, but everyone else played really well."

Perhaps the defining moments of the game were the long, hard-fought rallies between the Panthers and the Bulldogs.

Coach Brianna Montgomery-Braun said her team started winning those rallies and gained momentum as the game wore on.

"Everyone played really well" Saturday, Montgomery-Braun said. "We've been working on a lot of mental things and not letting any balls hit the floor."

One of the reasons no balls hit the floor was because of libero Jessica Matthews, who anchored the Bulldogs' defense.

"Jess played a good game again," Montgomery-Braun said.

It wasn't just Matthews who came out swinging Saturday, however.

"Everyone was enthusiastic," Montgomery-Braun said. "That makes a huge difference. It was a good game to get us back on track."

Moffat County lost Friday at home against Palisade High School, 3-0, but the loss didn't appear to affect the team Saturday.

"I don't think they played nearly as well against Palisade, as they did" Saturday, Montgomery-Braun said. "This was one of those games that will help us get over the hump."

After losing to Palisade, a win against Delta was exactly what Montgomery-Braun's team needed.

"It feels good to get a win under our belt," she said. "Hopefully, we can turn it into a winning streak."

Delta came out strong in the first game, building a 4-1 lead.

But MCHS came storming back and never trailed again in winning the first game, 25-21.

The Lady Bulldogs led wire-to-wire in the second game, building up impressive leads of 14-6 and 21-12 on their way to a 25-19 victory.

The third game was a chance for Moffat County to showcase its talents, as it built up leads of 11-1 and 16-3, before winning, 25-15.

"Delta has a lot of potential," Montgomery-Braun said. "They're still working through some kinks, but they definitely have some potential."

Delta head coach Renee St. Jean said her team needed to keep its enthusiasm through the entire match.

"We played hard for the first two games," she said. "But we kind of quit in the third, which I have never seen before."

St. Jean echoed what Montgomery-Braun said about the Panthers.

"This is a rebuilding year for us," St. Jean said. "They fought hard for most of the game."

St. Jean credited senior Amy Loy for keeping Delta in the game.

On Thursday, the Lady Bulldogs will face Rifle High School at home, starting at 4:30 p.m. with the C-team, followed by the junior varsity at 5:30 p.m. and varsity at 6 p.m.

With the momentum gained against Delta, Moffat County could make a run, Roberts said.

"We just need to keep doing what we did today," she said. "And we'll be successful."

Ben Bulkeley can be reached at 875-1795 or bbulkeley@craigdailypress.com.

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