Moffat County volleyball ends drought with home win; Craig Middle School dukes it out at districts |

Moffat County volleyball ends drought with home win; Craig Middle School dukes it out at districts

Moffat County High School's Jaidyn Steele and Roaring Fork's Gaby Santana keep on top of the ball at the net Thursday at MCHS. Lady Bulldogs defeated the Rams in three sets, 25-21, 25-20 and 25-14, for their first home win since 2015.
Andy Bockelman

If you were wearing blue and white in the past week on the volleyball court, odds are you were smiling.

Moffat County High School varsity volleyball took its first home win of the season Wednesday night with a sweep of the Roaring Fork Rams.

The victory is also the first Lady Bulldogs have had at home since October 2015, and the squad was eager to end the two-year drought at the Dog House, perhaps none more so than Josie Timmer and Jana Camilletti, the honorees of the evening’s Senior Night.

“We just had good attitudes, great passes, just having fun and not getting down on each other,” Timmer said.

Though most of the game pace was set by Moffat County, the Rams rocketed to a 10-0 start in the opening set, only to have their momentum shut down by the Dogs as MCHS libero Terry Gillett stayed at the service line for 18 straight points, a streak that included five aces.

Though Gillett’s stint serving didn’t quite carry the Bulldogs the entire way, the 21-13 lead they had when the Rams got the ball back finished at 25-21.

Roaring Fork, a team defeated 3-0 earlier in the season when Moffat County came to Carbondale, trailed nearly the entire second set, including a solid streak of serves midway through by Bailey Lawton, taking their greatest lead at 18-9 as Tiffany Hildebrandt slammed a kill to the Rams’ side of the floor.

“We were really focused on hitting tonight, we haven’t done that a lot in a lot of our games,” Camilletti said of the night’s physical nature.

The 25-20 second round was child’s play compared to the final set, and though Roaring Fork started strong, the Lady Dogs turned it around after being tied 7-7 and stayed in front for the rest of the match, finishing 25-14.

Across the night, Hailee Herndon took three blocks, three tips, three kills.

“Just talking and working together was a big thing, and we get down a lot on ourselves even in a game we can win, but we didn’t do that tonight,” Herndon said.

Herndon also was seven for seven at the line, while Timmer and Lawton each earned four aces while serving and Gillett was 20 for 22.

“Terry’s serves were spot-on, but there’s not one person I can single out for tonight, everybody had a great game once we got past those first 10 points,” head coach Erin Knez said. “The biggest thing we talked about during timeouts was staying focused no matter what happened on their side of the court, we wanted them to play hard the entire time, and they did.”

Knez said she was a little apprehensive about playing back-to-back days, with Moffat County girls taking a road loss Tuesday against Grand Junction’s Central High — 25-15, 25-17, 25-21 — but the 4-15 Bulldogs showed they could bounce back.

Moffat County volleyball will travel Friday to Delta and host its final home game — a pink game for Breast Cancer Awareness Month — Saturday against Gunnison.

Timmer and Camilletti said they hope to keep the home sentiment going strong.

“I feel like if we come out with the same energy, we definitely have a shot against them,” Timmer said.

While the high school volleyball schedule has at least one more week remaining, the teams of Craig Middle School wrapped up their year last weekend with the district tournament in Rangely, three of the four squads ending 2-0 and tournament champs.

The seventh-grade A- and B-Teams each captured a trophy, B finishing its final round against Steamboat Springs, 25-20 and 25-21, and A earning wins of 27-25 and 25-15 over Meeker.

While eighth-grade B-Team split the Saturday event at 1-1, the A-Team topped Steamboat in the opening round to face off with Meeker, losing the first set 25-22, only to come back 25-23 and 15-8 to take the title.

Eighth-grade coach Jessica Profumo said her team’s transition to the high school level will be marked by one big trait — determination.

“I can tell they’re excited to grow in the sport, and they’ll do whatever it takes to be competitive,” she said.

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