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Winning Ways Continue For Varsity Netters
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On the road and at home, Escalon put both games this week in the win column in varsity volleyball action.

They were winners at Ripon Christian on Tuesday, Oct. 5 and handled Riverbank at home on Thursday, Oct. 7.

"I thought we started off great," coach Rusty Fachner said of kicking off the week with the road win at RC. "The first game, we dominated them, then we seemed to lose interest, gave them a little confidence."

Escalon topped the host Ripon Christian team 25-7 in the first game, then held on for wins of 25-21, 25-23, to take the match.

Chelsea Fachner was the team leader in kills with nine and added 12 digs on the day. Steph Williamson had six kills and three aces, Emily McCants had six kills and Ashley Brown recorded 12 digs in the balanced attack.

"We played down a little bit, we didn't play our best volleyball," Fachner admitted. "I think we had it in our minds to get through our two games and look to Tuesday (Oct. 12) against Ripon."

Despite the somewhat lackluster performance, Fachner said there were some strong individual efforts.

"Emily McCants did a nice job for us defensively, passing and hitting," noted Fachner. "Another player who has been real steady for us is Sandi French, she has done a terrific job, she's not going to have 10 kills a game but she's going to block, she's going to set, pass and hit the ball, both Emily and Sandi were excellent against Ripon Christian."

Hosting Riverbank on Thursday, the Lady Cougars again took the match in three, 25-12, 25-18, 25-8.

"They play real good defense, they scrapped, hustled on defense, they got the ball back to us," Fachner said of the game. "Chelsea had 16 kills and 15 digs, it was a pretty incredible effort for a three-game match, she went up and pounded the ball."

Williamson had 18 assists, six kills and six aces.

"She served the ball terrifically," Fachner said of his setter.

McCants and Kacey Ball added four kills each, with Brown again recording a dozen digs.

"Ashley did a nice job, she didn't have a great game against Ripon Christian but she bounced back vs. Riverbank."

Jenna Martin also got high marks for her efforts against the visiting Lady Bruins on Thursday, serving well.

This week is seen as a crucial point for Escalon, as they were scheduled to host Ripon on Tuesday, after The Times went to press, and will play host to Hilmar on Thursday.

"We have them back to back, that will let us know if we'll be in the hunt for the TVL championship," said Fachner. "We've fought through some things and we've won 15 in a row, we're 18-2 and we haven't dropped many games in doing that."

The girls have also gained a sense in pride in playing at a consistently high level, said the coach.

"They're dissatisfied with themselves when they don't play well," he explained. "The kids take the ownership when they don't play well and that's a great sign."