Middle school splits with Sailors

RANGELY — On Saturday, Sept. 13, the Rangely Panthers volleyball teams hosted their first home match of the season against the Steamboat Sailors.
The eighth-grade Panther team started off slowly, allowing Steamboat take an 8-0 lead.
They quickly fought back and came within two points of the Sailors. However, they were never able to overcome the Sailors’ early lead, and lost game one 21-25. The Panthers fought back in game two, winning 25-12.
Myriah Moreno did great at the serving line helping the Panthers come out on top.
This led to the third game, in which the Panthers lost 8-15.
“Even though the outcome didn’t turn out as we would’ve liked, I am very proud of the way the girls played. There were many long, competitive volleys in this match, and the girls were hustling and doing their jobs on the court,” said Coach Valerie Medina.
In game one of the eighth-grade B match, the Panthers and the Sailors were never more than three points apart. The lead changed several times throughout the game but the Sailors came out on top, 25-23.
The Panthers controlled game two, with some great serving by Brittany Babineaux and Emily Cassavaugh to win the game, 25-5. They continued their aggressiveness, dominating game three 15-2.
Myriah Moreno was the only Panther server in this game, and all of the girls did a great job doing their part on defense to allow the Panthers to keep control of the game.
Quincey Thacker and Emily Cassavaugh were this week’s eighth-grade athletes of the week. Thacker always has such a positive attitude and has the ability to bring the team back up when spirits are low. She is one of those players that is willing, and able, to go on the court in any position and do just fine. In Saturday’s games, she played in four different positions without any hesitation or complaints. Cassavaugh had a great day at the serving line, making 16 of 16 serves, including four aces.
The seventh-grade girls got off to a great start in the A match with two straight wins over the Sailors winning 25-13 in both games.
Aimee Hogan and Tessa Slagle once again were strong on the serving line, while Catherine Merino and Mallory Smith were very impressive in the back row with their passes.
Middle hitter Hailee Russell had a number of kills and outside hitter McKale Pennell was solid at the net.
The B match got off to a slow start with a loss of 23-25 to Steamboat, but the girls were able to make a comeback with two wins of 25-10 and 15-8 in the second and third games.
Rachel Dillon and Kimberly Hemphill did exceptionally well on the serving line to score for the Panthers.