Longhorns volleyball at home with success this year
The Basalt High girls volleyball team won its fifth consecutive match Friday 3-1 against Roaring Fork at the BHS Bighouse, and improved to 9-3 overall on the season and 3-0 in Class 3A Western Slope League play.
For the Lady Longhorns, a struggling, sub-.500 team in recent history, the turnaround has been most welcome.
“I don’t know too much of the history, because I wasn’t here, but I also know there isn’t much of it,” said Billy Miller, Basalt’s first-year coach.
“I think more than anything, the way we train has changed the most, both conditioning and game-time situational training,” Miller said. “Essentially, the girls are prepared on the court.
“And now, the girls are pretty excited, they’re enjoying their success and they’re trying to keep it alive.”
Basalt dropped the first game to Roaring Fork last Friday, then rallied back to win the next three and the match.
BHS senior Robin Child had seven kills on 20 attempts, along with 16 blocks. “That was the big stat of the night,” Miller said of Child’s blocks.
“And my other middle, junior Lauren Redfern, had eight kills on 35 attempts and eight blocks. Meanwhile, my defensive specialists pretty much prevented anything from touching the floor,” Miller said, referring to juniors Jenny Hamby and Jessica Barnes and senior Gwen Leslie.
Up next for the Lady Longhorns is Eagle Valley on the road Friday night.
“We’ve already had tons of upside to our season,” Miller said, “and there’s a possibility for a league championship – as well as a four-way tie depending on what happens in the next few weeks.
“We’ve got a tough schedule coming up, including Eagle Valley, an undefeated team in league, as well as Hotchkiss and Cedaredge. All three of those matches are going to be down to the point – I don’t think we have an easy match left this season.”
Miller said the Longhorns’ success this season can be attributed to a lot of work in the off-season with various club teams and several tournaments together.
“Right now, I’m really focusing on defense and conditioning,” the coach said, “and being able to withstand district tournament, regional tournament and state tournament – so that if we get that far, the girls are ready.”
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