Aspen High School volleyball sweeps Moffat County in season opener
There is cohesiveness to the Aspen High School volleyball team this season, and it paid big dividends in Saturday’s season opener against Moffat County.
“We have a really good group of girls that work super well together, so I expected it to be like this,” junior Mary Williams said. “I think we really surprised people today.”
The Skiers made easy work of the Bulldogs, winning 3-0 inside the AHS gymnasium. Set scores were 25-15, 25-19 and 25-12.
It was Aspen’s first game under coach Bailey Holmes.
“I’m really happy with the way they played together,” Holmes said. “To see them smiling and having fun and crushing balls, it makes me really happy. That was really fun to watch.”
Aspen trailed 2-0 in the first set against Moffat, but thanks to runs of 5-0, 4-0 and 4-0 built a commanding 13-4 lead and was hardly tested. After leading 5-2 in the second set, the Bulldogs started to push back, holding leads at 7-6 and 13-12.
After Moffat took the second lead, AHS called timeout and answered with an impressive run, outscoring the Bulldogs 13-6 to close out the set.
Answering runs from the other team was not one of the team’s strengths in 2016.
“This year we know we need to step it up and come together each point and get really excited,” Williams said. “Our offense was pretty good, and we played super smart. I thought that was what carried us past the other team for sure.”
Aspen led 6-1 in the third set before Moffat responded with a 6-1 run to tie the set at 7-7. From there, the Skiers cruised to the easy set victory and the sweep.
Holmes, who had previously been the junior varsity coach, moves to 1-0 in her varsity coaching career.
“I had a lot of nerves before the game, but as soon as we got started they all just kind of went away and I let the girls take the reins,” Holmes said. “It’s the attitudes. Just them always smiling and always being positive is a huge, huge part of this game.”
Williams led the team with eight kills, while Maddy Bergdahl and Jasmin Hanson each had six.
With the loss, Moffat County fell to 0-2 after also being swept Thursday against Steamboat Springs.
The Skiers will next play Tuesday at home against Roaring Fork.
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Chase Kelly, playing at No. 3 singles, won his first three matches before falling to Niwot’s Luke Weber in the final. It was the lone loss of the season for the freshman.