By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Straight Sets Victories For Varsity Volleyball


Modesto Christian and Hughson both fell to Escalon’s varsity volleyball girls over the past week, the Lady Cougars winning both matches in three straight.

Against the Crusaders on Oct. 26, scores were 25-14, 25-14, 25-10.

“The entire team played well on Monday night. I was able to get every person on my team good playing time and they did well staying focused and finishing with a strong win,” head coach Kayla Kootstra said of hosting the MC squad. “This was our last home game in October and the teams wore pink for warm-ups in honor of breast cancer awareness month.”

The program has been raising money for an organization called Barbells for Boobs, added Kootstra, which provides mammograms for those in need. So far, the varsity players have raised over $300 for the organization. If anyone would like to donate they still can at 

In the win, Kylee Irwin-Paz had nine kills and six digs, Cydney Keener had 24 assists and three aces, Maddie Nicholas added three aces and five digs.

The girls then hit the road for a game Wednesday, Oct. 28 at Hughson. Scores there in Escalon’s favor were 25-15, 25-13, 25-8.

“Hughson has a much improved team this year and being their Senior Night they came out ready to play,” Kootstra said. “I was proud of the girls for buckling down and showing improvement in each game that we won.

“After going over season stats and taking a look at my line-up I had decided to change a few things going into Wednesday’s game and wasn’t exactly sure how the girls would respond, but they did great and we ended up having one of our best passing and defensive games of the season.”

In the Hughson match, Keener had 32 assists and three aces, Taylor Laugero had 10 digs, Nicholas played a solid all-around game with seven kills, 19 digs and three aces, Irwin-Paz had nine kills.

The team was slated to host Hilmar on Monday, Nov. 2 after sports press time for The Times. Kootstra said she was hoping the girls would continue the push they started in Hughson and carry that energy and momentum into the game with Hilmar and on into the playoffs. She also was looking for a better passing and defensive game than her squad played the first time around when they met the Yellowjackets.

“We also get to honor our eight seniors Monday and there will be a lot of excitement and emotion that we will need to channel into a focused attack,” Kootstra said.