Putting away a pair of Trans-Valley League foes, Escalon’s varsity Lady Cougars volleyball team got crucial victories as they battle for a share of the league crown. The girls defeated Riverbank on the road Tuesday, then hosted Ripon and shut down the Indians on Thursday.
In the Oct. 15 contest against the host Lady Bruins, Escalon took control in a 25-8 opener, then had to battle for a 25-18 win in game two before finishing off the host squad 25-11 for the three-game sweep.
“They challenged us a little better in game two,” admitted Escalon coach Teresa Williamson, noting that Riverbank came out more focused in game two and gave the visiting Cougars some anxious moments. But the squad got back on track and finished out game two, slowly putting some distance between them, then finishing it out with the easy win in game three.
Taylor Laugero had 17 assists, six digs and six aces. Cassidy Caton had nine kills with seven from Kylee Irwin-Paz.
Thursday against Ripon, the host Lady Cougars had a slow start, falling in the first game by a 15-25 final.
“I think they recovered well,” said Williamson of her team. “They took game two, never fell apart at all.”
The girls won game two 25-14, then went on to win the next two, 25-16, 25-14 for a 3-1 win over the Lady Indians. Caton had 11 kills and five aces, Brooke Silva had nine kills and Laugero notched 26 assists, with 18 digs from Savannah Guerra.
“A big factor in that game, that doesn’t show up on the stat sheet, was Maddie Nicholas,” added Williamson. “She was doing a lot of different things, had a lot of digs and just played solid volleyball without a lot of errors. She was a factor.”
On Saturday, the varsity squad traveled to play in the Stockton Classic Tournament and ended with a 2-2 mark, winning against Bear Creek and East Union, falling to Dougherty and Rodriguez.
“We finished third in the silver division, seventh overall,” said Williamson. “It was good in that everybody played, everyone participated.”
The girls were scheduled to host Orestimba on Tuesday, after The Times went to press and travel to Hughson on Thursday, Oct. 26.