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Volleyball Girls Battle Through Preseason Slate
One match was a win, one was a loss and both went four games.

Escalon's varsity girls lost at home on Tuesday, Sept. 14 to Sonora before bouncing back with a solid effort and a 3-1 win over Calaveras on Wednesday, Sept. 15.

Sonora got a little revenge for an earlier loss to Escalon in tournament play, taking the contest by a 3-1 margin over the host squad.

"We came out flat," admitted coach Teresa Williamson.

Cassidy Caton had 11 kills, Nicole Bianchi had 32 digs, with two blocks apiece from Morgan Jensen and Megan Faria. Shay Beam had 34 assists in the losing effort.

Not having much time to think about it, the varsity girls were back on the court Wednesday to take on the visiting Calaveras Redskins. This time it was the Lady Cougars who came out on top, 25-10, 18-25, 29-27, 25-13.

"In games two and three, I changed my line up a little bit, then I went back to the regular line up for game four and they handled Calaveras pretty well," said Williamson.

The big margin of victory in game one allowed her to do some tinkering with the line up, seeing how some players did in other slots.

Beam had 38 assists on the night, with three aces and 11 kills from Faria and 33 digs from Bianchi in the win.

Junior Varsity

With EHS teacher and JV volleyball coach Kayla Kootstra out on maternity leave, Williamson is also working with the JV girls, assisted by freshman coach Niki Hoover.

Against Sonora, the Escalon JV competed well and gave the visiting Wildcats a tough battle, falling 24-26, 21-25.

"The girls really fought hard, Sonora just outbattled us," said Williamson.

Wednesday against Calaveras, the JV squad came away with a 2-0 win, by scores of 25-22, 25-20.

"They again played very well," noted Williamson.

Kaitlin DaDalt and Sam Shipley each had two blocks, with Shipley and Geonna Solari notching four kills apiece. Sarah Fernandez added 12 assists in a well-rounded effort from the JV girls.


The youngest of the Lady Cougars, the freshman girls were 2-0 winners over Sonora, 25-21, 25-16 with six kills from Taylor Busch, two aces from Hailey Stephens and two aces, 11 assists from Claire Fitzgerald. The frosh girls were also able to put together a 2-0 victory over Calaveras, with Hoover and Williamson both pleased with the progress they are seeing in the young players.

"They're improving, serving and passing a lot better," Williamson said.

All three squads will be in action this week; they were slated to play at Turlock on Tuesday, Sept. 21 after The Times went to press. The JV and varsity only will travel to Riverbank for the Trans-Valley League opener on Thursday, Sept. 23 with the JV game at 5:30 p.m. and the varsity at 6:30 p.m.

Weekend action will see the varsity head to the Oakdale Invitational on Saturday, Sept. 25.