Aspen takes Saints in three
EDWARDS, Colorado ” Vail Christian volleyball coach Cathy Alexander does not like to lose.
In an interview a few years ago, Alexander talked about her desire to win, saying, “I’m a competitive person. My poor kids, when I play ‘Sorry’ with them, I don’t like to lose. I send them home all the time. (My husband) Charlie’s like, ‘Honey, it’s just a game.'”
In that light, her comments after Aspen took Vail Christian in three games 29-27, 25-18, 25-20 were surprising.
“I hate to lose. I am an absolute competitor,” she said. “But if I’m going to lose, I’d much rather lose like that ” playing hard, not giving up and playing through to the last point.”
Tuesday night in the second match in Vail Christian’s new gym, both the Skiers and the Saints had to attend to their respective business.
Aspen was coming off a pair of games ” a loss to Coal Ridge and a win against Olathe where the Skiers nearly frittered away a 2-0 lead. From those two matches,
Aspen coach Clay Dahlman wanted to see his team improve upon its passing.
“We didn’t have our best night tonight,” he said. “As a coach, I’m a little disappointed. I have high expectations. I’ve seen the girls perform at a higher level than I did tonight.
The passing wasn’t great, so we’re going to go back to practice and work on the pass-reception. If we pass well, we can prove we’re one of the toughest teams out there in 3A.”
When the Skiers got the ball to the net, one could see why Dahlman was emphasizing the transition game. The Skiers showed they could put the ball down in their opponent’s end with the best of them. Senior Elissa Walter led the way with 10 kills in Aspen’s powerful attack.
Meanwhile, Alexander was looking for more fight from her team after a patchwork performance against West Grand Saturday.
“Definitely, their focus was there, and their togetherness as a team,” Alexander said. “When they played together, their court gets real small. They were hitting well. They just weren’t in space.”
Alexander was also able to rotate in some of her younger players to get valuable experience at the varsity level.
“I definitely like that they step up there and they’re not afraid,” she said. “They’re willing to step up there and do it. Really, I’m just trying to build a bench. We’re trying to get some experience. As we get further and further into league, I need to be able to draw from the bench, and they’re good.”
Aspen (5-1) hosts Hotchkiss Friday night at 6 p.m., while the Saints (3-3) entertain Meeker at 6:30 p.m.
Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 748-2934 or email@example.com.