News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Outlaws remain undefeated

Sisters’ volleyball squad matched up against Sweet Home in Sisters on Wednesday, March 17. Both teams entered the contest undefeated. The Outlaws played their best match of the season to post the win with scores of 25-19, 25-19, 21-23, and 25-20, and stay at the top of the heap.

The first set was marked by long rallies, hard, powerful kills, strong blocks in the middle, and tenacious digs from the back row.

At the start the score went back-and-forth with only a one point spread and then Sweet Home went on a run to gain a 12-7 advantage. Sisters fought back with a kill from Natalie Sitz, Anessa Stotts served five in a row, ending with a powerful kill from Greta Davis to tie it up 12-12. The Outlaws pushed to a 21-15 lead, but the Huskies narrowed the gap to 21-18. Gracie Vohs, who plays middle, slammed the ball straight down a few plays later to extend the Outlaws lead to 24-18. The Huskies managed one more point, but then Greta Davis powered the ball down the sideline for the 25-19 win.

Sisters had the momentum entering the second set, and was “in system,” with precise pass-set-hit sequences. With the score at 6-6, the game had already been tied four times. From there, Sisters pulled away and never looked back. Davis again slammed the ball down for the kill and the final point for the win.

The Outlaws lost their focus in the third set. They missed serves, hit the ball out, and had lots of unforced errors. The Huskies took control and after the first few points they took the lead and kept it to the end to force a fourth set.

In the fourth, the game was tied 10 different times. The score stayed within a couple points spread until Ellie Rush stepped to the service line midway through the set. The momentum shifted and the Outlaws got their spark back. Rush served with the Outlaws down by one, 11-12. After a very long rally, Sophie Silva smacked a bullet to the ground and tied it up 12-12. Rush served to a 15-12 Outlaws lead. The score again was back-and-forth. Davis and Silva put up an incredible block to tie it again 16-16. Davis and Sydney Myhre put up another timely block to give the Outlaws a 17-16 edge. At 19-19 the Outlaws pulled ahead and held on for the win.

Coach Rory Rush said, “In every rotation we were able to step up and pass the ball. The girls did an incredible job. And Anessa (Stotts) was just phenomenal. She had some great digs, saves, and serves. She was an anchor for us in the back row.”

Davis led the team with 24 kills. Silva recorded 12 kills and eight blocks and Vohs added five kills and seven blocks. Sitz had five kills in the match and Rush dished out 109 assists.

Sweet Home has always been a big rival and several of the Outlaws players were excited to talk about the win.

Davis shared, “We wanted to play as hard as we could. We played as a team and not as individuals. They had a big block, but we decided to run a quick offense, and that worked well and frustrated them.”

Silva added, “Everybody showed up tonight and that made it easy to play together. This was a big game for us because almost every time we’ve played them it’s gone five sets ever since I was a freshman.”

When asked about her outstanding blocking performance, Silva said, “I just focused on the ball when they were quick sets and I put up a wall.”

Defensive specialist Stotts, who did a stellar job in the back row, said, “I trust my blockers to take away specific angles because then it helps me to know where to line up to get the dig and make the good passes.

Setter Ellie Rush said, “I think we came out really strong in the first two sets, and then in the third we were too confident, and relaxed too much. Once we lost and had to go to a fourth set, we knew what we had to do and weren’t going to let them take it to five. Our back row just did a phenomenal job, and a lot of the credit needs to go to the passers, because without them we wouldn’t have got the great hits. But, I don’t want to undermine the hitters because they really put the ball down when we needed them to.”

On the road a day later, the Outlaws cruised to a win over Woodburn. Davis had 11 kills in the match, and Silva recorded seven.

Sisters was to play Cascade at home on Monday, March 22, followed by a match against Summit. They will play Philomath at home on Thursday, March 25.


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