Back on the attack: Devils in four |

Back on the attack: Devils in four

Ian Cropp
Vail, CO Colorado

GYPSUM ” Sometimes a loss or two can help in the long run.

Much like an early-season funk put Eagle Valley volleyball into soul-searching mode last year, the Devils spun off course for the first few league matches this year.

On Thursday night, however, Eagle Valley got back on track with a resounding win over Delta, 25-2, 25-17, 23-25, 25-14.

“I’ve been coaching these girls completely wrong,” Eagle Valley coach Rob Crawford said. “We went through some hard lessons last week and learned a lot about ourselves. I think I’ve been overcoaching the heck out of these girls.”

The Devils (4-5 overall, 1-3 in the 4A Western Slope) came out on fire in the first game Thursday.

“I like games like that,” Crawford said. “I told the girls, ‘Go out there and have fun with your friends.’ They kept it lighthearted, which is easy to do when you make it 25-2.”

Whitney VanVoorst ripped off 15 serves in a row during the first game.

For some of the second game, the Devils fell behind and had trouble moving the ball around.

“The girls just started getting so tight again. We called timeout and didn’t talk about anything important. Then they went out and did their jobs,” Crawford said. “When we play relaxed, we’re good to go.”

After a funk in the third game, the Devils cruised in the fourth.

Ryanne Wilson led the team with nine kills, followed by Whitney Wright (7), VanVoorst (7) and Angela Phillips (6).

Phillips, who only played in three games, picked up a match-high seven aces.

“She’s playing great when she’s sure what she’s doing, and she’s more sure of what she’s doing these days,” Crawford said.

With plenty of volleyball to go in the season, Crawford is happy the Devils have figured out what helps them click and what holds them back.

“It took us a little while,” he said. “I don’t really need to correct form during a game. It’s like trying to correct someone’s golf swing in the middle of a tournament. It’s a bad idea.”

On Saturday, the Devils are in Palisade.

Sports Writer Ian Cropp can be reached at 748-2935 or

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