Palisade outlasts Eagle Valley volleyball in five sets |

Palisade outlasts Eagle Valley volleyball in five sets

Eagle Valley's Shelbi Lubbers fires one over against Palisade on Saturday, Sept. 8, in Gypsum. The visiting Bulldogs won a marathon in five, 24-26, 29-27, 24-26, 25-21, 15-10.
Chris Dillmann |

GYPSUM — And the scramble for the 4A Western Slope volleyball title begins, and it’s going to be crazy.

Palisade outlasted Eagle Valley, 24-26, 29-27, 24-26, 25-21, 15-10, on Saturday, Sept. 8, in the league opener for both teams.

“Last year, we were working really hard and able to get a win here,” Bulldogs senior Alexandra MacAskill said. “We didn’t want to come here and let last year go to waste. We wanted to prove it wasn’t a mistake. I think we did that today, and everyone helped.”

MacAskill helped, too. She had 35 kills. That’s not a typo.

“She definitely is a big part of our team,” Palisade coach Wendy MacAskill said. “It’s not a surprise. However, volleyball is a team sport and one person can’t win a match. Everyone has to be out there. Eagle Valley did some good things on the block. In that case, you have to go to other people. Good defense by Eagle and a good response by our team.”

Palisade overcame a 2-1 deficit in this one. Alexandra MacAskill said that two-point set losses in a defeat at the hands of Montrose on Thursday, Sept. 6, helped her team push through on Saturday.

Eagle Valley did its best to stay with the Bulldogs, despite a cavalcade of injuries.

‘Find a rhythm’

“We had a lot of players out of position, so they really couldn’t find a rhythm. There was no rhythm today,” Devils coach Jackie Rindy said. “We’re just playing a ton of injuries. I just found out about another one. It’s tough because we haven’t had girls play together. We’re bringing up JV players.”

That said, the Devils’ Elyse Fitzgerald had a big game, after playing more of a supporting role the last few years. Bree Gates and Shelbi Lubbers were swinging away with gusto. Meanwhile, sophomore Eliza Wetzel made here presence felt in big moments.

“I think our girls fought today,” Wendy MacAskill said. “They weren’t willing to concede the match after being down 2-1. They answered with fight and I’m really super proud of that.”

“I thought they played well and Palisade is a great defensive team and Alex is tremendous hitter,” Rindy said.

Palisade returns home on Tuesday, Sept. 11, to face Battle Mountain, which has already won at Glenwood Springs. Meanwhile, Eagle Valley heads to Steamboat Springs on Thursday, Sept. 13.

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