Tough losses against good teams for Lady Dawgs
The Culver Lady Dawgs volleyball squad had a tough schedule last week and Culver went 1-3 in four matches played.
Culver played the No. 9 ranked 3A Burns Highlanders (21-6) Oct. 15, losing to Burns in three sets, 25-10, 25-10, 25-13.
"We were continuing to have a strong schedule toward the end of our season and definitely getting pushed and playing better teams," head volleyball coach Gabrielle Alley said. "It was really fun to have that opportunity and I switched our lineup up, so every person got to play, to get used to that level of play. Unfortunately, it did not come out the way we wanted it to, but we still played tough."
Kayden LeeAnn led the team in aces with four and Hali Solderstom led the team in digs with 10.
The Lady Dawgs played two conference teams in a three-way tournament at Chemawa High School Oct. 17. Culver, Delphian and Chemawa were the teams at the tournament.
Culver played the Chemawa Braves first and after losing the first set 25-22, the Lady Dawgs won the next three sets. Culver beat Chemawa 3-1, 22-25, 25-17, 25-13, 25-21.
"Chemawa served really tough, so that was something we had to adjust to, but we continued to play as a team and we were able to play the game we wanted to," said Alley.
Claire Bender ended the game with 18 aces.
"That was definitely a big part of that game," said Alley. "She had long serving stretches in every set."
Anyla Rico had eight kills for the Lady Dawgs and Bender led the team in digs with 34. Brooke Bush and Emma Richards both had 10 assists for Culver.
They took on the Delphian Dragons right after facing Chemawa and lost 3-0, 25-16, 25-15 25-20.
"Delphian continues to be kind of a rival team for us," Alley said. "The serving game was a really big difference in this game. We just missed so many serves, which let them side out really quickly, giving them the ball a lot. We only had nine aces and Lucy Louden had five of them."
Louden had eight kills and Bender ended with seven for Culver. Richards ended the game with 10 assists.
Culver added a tournament at Corbett High School to their schedule Oct. 19, and after a few matches of pool play, the Lady Dawgs lost to 4A Banks 2-0, 25-8, 25-20 in tournament play.
"We played Corbett the first match and lost to them in pool play," said Alley. "We came back and beat a Washington school, which allowed us to be in the championship bracket, which was really cool for us. We played a tough Banks team and definitely got to see that in the game. They had some great hitters and blockers."
"It was a tough tournament we were at and every single player was able to play," she said. "Every single person contributed and even though we didn't come out with the win against Banks, we really fought back in that second set. We still missed serves, which is something we continue to work on. As far as working as a team, It was some of the best volleyball we have played all year and it was against a tough team."
"We had some lineup changes and some injuries, so the entire Corbett tournament, we didn't have a single senior on the court, which meant we got a good look at next year and some sophomores had to step up and they did," Alley said. "It was all good things."
After the Corbett Tournament, the Lady Dawgs moved to 14-8 overall and 11-3 in league play and are ranked No. 11 in 2A. They are sitting in the No. 2 spot in the Tri-River Conference, behind Kennedy (26-1 overall). Delphian is now ranked No. 9 in 2A and is right behind Culver, with a 10-4 league record.
Culver and Delphian both played Monday, Oct. 21, past the Madras Pioneer deadline. The Lady Dawgs host no No. 1 ranked Kennedy Trojans during their last regular season game of the year. They play at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23. Culver has a league playoff game at 12 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 26. If the Lady Dawgs win, they play in an away league playoff game Monday, Oct. 28.
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