It may have been the final match of the season, but the Outlaws volleyball team showed its fans the type of game the ladies are capable of playing. The Outlaws destroyed the ninth-ranked Weston McEwen Tigerscots in three straight sets, 25-20, 25-10 and 25-20 on Tuesday, Oct. 22.

This season the Outlaws had the talent, but the team never seemed to gel. The ladies often showed flashes of brilliance, but proved unable to sustain their power and pizzaz through an entire match. Tuesday night was different. The Outlaws came out storming and never let up.

The Tigerscots never had a chance. Although they occasionally nipped at the Outlaws’ heels, EHS was clearly in command all night.

The opener saw EHS jump to a commanding 23-12 lead before the Tigerscots knew what hit them. The Scots battled back to 23-20 before their lights went out.

The second match saw more of the same, with the Outlaws taking a 20-3 lead before the Tigerscots held a mini-rally that quickly evaporated before succumbing 25-10.

The Tigerscots came out barking for the final set, jumping to a 9-4 lead before the Outlaws’ superior teamwork and patience to control the extended net battles took over. EHS tied the set at 11 and went on tear to a 20-12 lead before the Tigerscots yipped their way through another mini-rally before being sent to the doghouse.

Killmeister Ashlyn Gray, one of the finest 2A volleyball players in the state, was on fire, dishing out devastating slams, and foiling Tigerscot attempts at kills with lightning-reflex returns. Junior Claire Farwell spent plenty of time down on the floor during dives and knee-slides in pursuit of miraculous saves. Jada Gray showed she may match her sister, Ashlyn’s, skill in the coming years. Seniors Ashlyn Gray, Tishrei Movich-Fields and Carsyn Miller played with competence and verve, keeping the atmosphere low-key, but determined.

Highlights included Ashlyn Gray with 15 kills and 15 digs. Jada Gray added 10 kills. Claire Farwell had 14 digs and Zari Bathke had 11 more digs plus six kills. Carsyn Miller was perfect with 12 of 12 serving and Rilyn Kirkland had 11 assists.

Coach Lisa Farwell said the ladies were at their best during the match.

“We’ve played well for one or two sets all season long, and had good matches where we came up short,” she said. “Tonight, we started the match on fire and fought hard for three straight. I’m super proud of my girls.”

The Outlaws’ teamwork exemplified what a championship volleyball squad is all about: Mature teamwork followed by fierce determination when the chips are down. It’s too late to salvage this season, but it gives a glimmer of hope for future possibilities.

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