The Joseph Charter School volleyball squad proved that Cougars just don’t have what it takes when it comes to battles with Eagles. Two Cougar squads, Echo and Country Christian of Molalla both fell victim to Eagle talons last week.
The Echo Cougars visited the Eagles’ packed lair on Oct. 24 for the first match of playoffs and left with little more than their hides, although they did win the first set of a four-set match. Match scores were 20-25, 25-20, 25-5 and 25-20.
The Cougars came out roaring in the first set, particularly taking charge of the net and stuffing a number of attempted kills by the Eagles. Not so in the following set, which the Eagles took with a reverse score, although the set was nip and tuck at points.
The defeat set the Cougars back as the Eagles steamrolled through Echo, racking up a 25-5 win in short order. Both squads fought tooth and nail in the fourth set, with a see-saw score until the final few points that saw the Eagles clinching the victory and the match 25-20.
Eagle Sabrina Albee, who racked up 11 kills and led the team in digs, said she never worried that victory would escape the Eagles.
“We were shaky in the beginning, but we pulled through,” she said.
She attributed the victory to hustle and communication.
Emma Hite notched an astounding 13 kills and four serving aces while Camille Crenshaw netted six and led the squad in serving aces with a half-dozen. Hite and Natalie Gorham led in the assists category
“We had a nice distribution of stats,” Coach Jill Hite said. “At first, the match wasn’t great, and I was wondering if we were still in school, but after that, we were great and settled in. One thing I like about these girls is they don’t get down on themselves, and they battle continuously.”
The ladies followed with a tough five-set victory over the Country Christian Cougars that went down to the wire before the ladies emerged from the battle victorious. Scores were 25-21, 16-25, 25-21, 22-25 and 18-16.
Once again, the ladies achieved victory through a total team effort, as revealed by stats. Albee collected 12 kills and two blocks while Hite gathered Emma eight kills, four blocks and a serving ace. Madelyn Nelson climbed aboard the Eagles Express with six kills, a block and two serving aces.
Camille Crenshaw added four kills, a block and a serving ace to the Eagle cause.
Coach Hite said the entire team was excited over the victory.
“I’m so proud of the girls,” she said. “They won the final set with sheer determination. They’re an amazing group of young ladies, and I’m very honored to be their coach.”
The Eagles next take on arch-nemesis Powder Valley at the Badgers’ court 10 a.m. on Friday, Nov. 2.