Devils roll in three
GYPSUM – Eagle Valley’s Summer Forsyth has seen enough of her teammates serves to know what its like having to return them.”A lot of our servers are tough,” Forsyth said. “Ashley (Farenholtz) found her jump serve again the other day in practice. Kelsey (Foster’s) serves are so hard to pass, and Whitney (Wright’s) are, too.”Thursday, Rifle got a glimpse of many tricky Eagle Valley serves as the Devils beat the Bears, 25-14, 25-22, 25-18 to improve to 5-6 in the 4A Western Slope with three matches left.”Any short (serves) will kill us, and we knew that,” said Rifle coach Geneva Farr. “We were just hesitant.”Foster led the way for the Devils with her short serves, while also mixing in some low, hard hits to keep the Rifle serve-receive from moving up too far. Farenholtz slammed three consecutive jump serves over the net in the first game, recording two aces. And Wright helped cut into a the Bears’ lead in the second game with a pair of aces on quick, low-trajectory serves.”When they are relaxed, everything is good and we are full of confidence,” said Eagle Valley coach Rob Crawford. The Devils built a big lead in the first game thanks to accurate passing and emphatic kills by Ashley Farenholtz.
“We passed much better and when we can pass and use our middles and are not getting blocked, we have freedom to swing,” Crawford said. “Ashley is getting to see the court really well. She sees when the line is open and puts it down there. She’s also made an adjustment in her approach.”Rifle, coming off some of its better matches this year against Glenwood, Steamboat and Palisade, wasn’t as vocal on the court as Farr would have liked.”I don’t know what happened tonight. The communication wasn’t on our side. There was no noise,” Farr said.ResurgenceEagle Valley lost some steam in the second game, and Rifle took advantage, building a 10-2 lead. The Devils clawed back and took the lead at 18-17 before pulling away at 22-21.”What I really liked was a couple players went into a funk in the second game and pulled themselves out of it,” Crawford said. “I admire that in a player. I thought Michelle (Parmenter) had some important kills and played extraordinarily well in the second game after not playing particularly well in the first game.”
Rifle’s offense, which came together at the start of the second game, tailed off a bit to end the game.”My girls were doing well and keeping the ball on their side,” Farr said. “They just needed to stay focused on their side, but they couldn’t finish the job well.”The Bears’ Jenna Withee made her way all over the court for digs, blocks and kills, while teammate Kelsey Feely had a good match setting. “She was hitting well and knew exactly where the placement was, and blocked well,” Farr said. “Kelsey can get her hands on everything. Even if the passes weren’t there, she was still setting it.”Quick upsEagle Valley’s sophomore setters Foster and Whitney VanVoorst split time and were creative in finding their hitters.
“I was really happy with the way they delivered the ball,” Crawford said.VanVoorst connected with middle hitter Ryanne Wilson on several short sets.In the final game, the Devils built a 21-13 lead before Rifle rallied for five points. The Devils then pulled away and Farenholtz finished off the match with a kill that landed just short of the backline.Today, the Devils travel to Glenwood Springs for the Demons Homecoming. The match begins at 6:30 p.m.Sports Writer Ian Cropp can be reached at 748-2935 or email@example.com.Vail, Colorado
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