With plenty of matches behind them, the Escalon varsity volleyball team is ready for Trans-Valley League play. The season was to kick off on Tuesday, Sept. 7 at home hosting Hilmar.
Varsity head coach Teresa Williamson has seen the team grow together during the preseason and they have some goals in mind as they enter league action.
This week, they swept past Central Catholic, Gregori and Linden, improving their preseason mark to 12-1.
They defeated Central Catholic 3-1 in the Foundation Game and had a standout effort from Rylie Lattig with three aces, seven digs and 25 assists. Mandy Murphy and Emily Vickers each had 16 kills, Bella Cormack added 12. Grace Ferreira had 24 digs and Vickers notched 15, while Cormack had four blocks.
Against Gregori, it was a 3-0 win.
“Ryle Lattig had three aces and 14 assists, Carsyn Hood had 14 assists,” said Williamson.
Kills leaders again were Murphy with 12, Vickers with 11. Murphy had 12 digs as well, with Ferreira recording 20 digs, Cormack and Mallory Berhorst each had three blocks.
“Giana Bava and Emily Vickers had three aces,” Williamson said of stats leaders for a 3-0 sweep of Linden. “Ryle Lattig with 19 assists and Carsyn Hood with 16.”
Murphy added 13 kills in the match, Vickers and Cormack each had nine. Ferreira had eight digs and Cormack had five blocks.
Putting together a 5-0 run for their preseason, the junior varsity Lady Cougars are excited for the games to come.
“They’re hard workers,” said head coach Krystal Rodriguez. “They want the undefeated TVL season as much as anyone else right now so they know they’re going to have to work for it.”
Last season, the team was moved into the Valley Oak League for a COVID-shortened campaign, so this year is a bit of a question mark as to what the TVL teams will bring.
“We work on everything each practice,” noted Rodriguez of getting prepared.
During the preseason the JV girls defeated Enochs, Ripon Christian, Sonora, Orestimba and Buhach.
“Sophia Martin and Macie Vickers are my returning players and athletes who helped last year’s JV team take first in the Valley Oak League,” explained Rodriguez.
They have taken on leadership roles and she said the entire team is learning together.
“I believe they underestimated themselves and their abilities,” the coach said. “They’ve learned and grown so much already and now that they see what they’re capable of as a solid team of 10, I am very excited to see them grow even more.”
The JV girls had their TVL opener with Hilmar slated at home, Tuesday, Sept. 7.
It has been a solid preseason for the youngest Lady Cougar on the volleyball court, playing to a 6-0 mark. Victories have come against Ripon Christian, Sonora, Orestimba, Buhach, Gregori and Linden, said head coach Shay Beam.
“I’m super excited for the season,” added Beam. “These girls didn’t get an eighth grade season but they have a ton of heart and passion so it makes up for the lack of a season last year.”
The girls were slated to open Trans-Valley League play against Hilmar in a Tuesday, Sept. 7 contest on the home court.