Vail Christian beats Vail Mountain in three |

Vail Christian beats Vail Mountain in three

SPT VCVB Dakota Francis 1 DT 9-29-09

EDWARDS, Colorado – The old cliche goes that no pep talks are needed before the rivalry game.

But a talk of some form actually was needed for Vail Christian before its game with the Vail Mountain School Tuesday. It was more of a chill talk instead of a pep talk.

“It’s not hard to get them ready for VMS,” Saints coach Cathy Alexander said. “My young ones do (need a little calming down). Definitely, Kylie (Alexander) and Ashlyn (Gruber). McKenzie (O’Brien)’s usually OK. Kylie and Ashlyn need a little moment of ‘Stop and breath.'”

Everyone’s oxygen flow was fine, and the Saints went out and knocked off the Gore Rangers, 25-21, 25-18, 25-16.

“It’s good. It’s the first time we won in three,” Vail Christian senior Beri Dwyer said. “It usually goes to four or five.”

The senior can hit, and she also knows her history. That was Vail Christian’s first sweep of their cross-county rivals as the Saints moved to 11-1 overall and 5-0 in the 2A Slope.

Balanced attack

As reported last week in the Vail Daily, the Vail Mountain School has had students held at home with illnesses, and the Gore Rangers, erring on the side of caution in light of the H1N1 virus being in the news, have been short-handed. Nevertheless, VMS was very competitive in the first two games.

“We’ve been battling health,” Gore Rangers coach Mike Garvey said. “I was really pleasedwith the first two games with the way the way the girls competed. They got a taste of what Vail Christian is. This is just a case where we have to fight on another night. This wasn’t our night.

“This is a solid team, a real tough serving team. They serve it hard and that kept us off balance quite a bit, but we’ll look forward to another match-up.”

Garvey had some players like freshman Sierra Brill in new situations, and when Brill succeeded with a kill, the normally-sedate coach was pumped.

“For her to come in there and take a an aggressive swing up in the air is big,” Garvey said. “I don’t know who jumped higher – me or her. She was excited as well.”

Vail Christian served Vail Mountain out of system, as has been the Saints’ style in 2009. The Saints were balanced through the rotation with Brooke Bowles, Dwyer, Dakota Francis, Gruber, younger Alexander and O’Brien.

“It’s a little rattling for my young ones. But that’s OK,” coach Alexander said. “Like I said, we learn something from every match. We learned how to handle some pressure with some fans and a big game. I think everybody was focused and ready to play.”

The show continues

Vail Mountain (6-6, 1-2) is at North Park Friday. It is the team’s only match in the next 10 days and so the Gore Rangers are hoping to be at full strength going into games with Plateau Valley and Soroco the weekend after next.

Meanwhile, Vail Christian hosts West Grand in a league match Saturday. at 3 p.m. The two teams met in a nonleague match in the season opener in Kremmling with the Saints winning the fifth game , 15-13.

Sports Editor Chris Freud can be reached at 970-748-2934 or

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