On Thursday night, the Craig Middle School volleyball teams welcomed their neighbors from the north to Craig and were beaten by Baggs’ best.
The Bulldogs seventh- and eighth-grade teams played three games against Little Snake River Valley School in the middle school gym, with all three Craig teams losing to the Rattlers in two sets.
First up was the seventh grade B team game, in which the team serving controlled most of the two sets. The Rattlers were able to put more of their serves in play, and picked up the win in straight sets.
The seventh grade A team game was much closer in the first set. After falling behind early, the Bulldogs clawed their way back to within a few points but never could tie the set up. Snake River got big plays when it needed them, including a couple powerful spikes from the back row. Snake River held on for a 25-20 win in that set.
In the second one, the Rattlers started off serving and were able to build a big lead, before winning 25-11 to close out the match.
In the eighth grade game, the teams battled back and forth through a series of lengthy points, but again it was the Rattlers who came out on top in the majority. They pulled away for a 25-16, 25-10 win.
Coach Chris Oxley was proud of her team’s play, though, saying it was some of their best this year against a strong opponent.
“Baggs is so much fun and so amazing to watch,” Oxley said. “They start their girls young and practice year round from what I understand, so they really rock. They aren’t in our league, so we mixed it up and tried some things tonight that we haven’t done, and we played better than we have all season.”
Despite the score, the way CMS played was encouraging for the team moving forward. They have been working through the basics of the game much of this year and pulled together key aspects Thursday, such as transitioning during a point.
That improvement will be important for the Bulldogs as they head to the district tournament in Rangely on Saturday.
“I’m really excited about this heading into the tournament,” Oxley said. “I think if these girls stay positive, they have a real shot at winning.”
Nate Waggenspack can be reached at 970-875-1795 or nwaggenspack@CraigDailyPress.com.