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Mancos volleyball team shows growth

Young Jays learn from losses

The Mancos Blue Jays volleyball team was swept in three games against Ridgway at home on Friday evening (22-11, 25-13, 25-11).

But head coach Brittany Lang was still optimistic, saying that her young team is improving with each match.

“We’re getting better every game,” she said. “We keep track of earned points, and we’re earning double amount of points each game. Against Ridgway, Kasey Wallace – our freshman libero – she played outstanding. And Nicole Hess is learning to run the team as a setter.”

The Lady Jays were back at home on Saturday hosting Telluride, and after falling behind 20-11 in game one, they appeared to settle down and came back within four, later falling 25-18.

But after building momentum at the end of game one, the Jays played neck-and-neck with the second-place team in the San Juan Basin League.

Telluride had multiple unforced errors in the second set, and Nicole Hess came up with multiple blocks early to give the Jays an 8-7 advantage.

Then, freshman Isis Jaime gave Mancos a lift off the bench with a kill and later an ace.

A spike by sophomore Mackenzie Benitez followed by an ace by Hess gave the home squad a 15-11 advantage. And later, Wallace came up with consecutive diving digs to keep rallies alive.

Telluride responded to the Jays’ run, and led by senior Brianna Brown, the Miners would come back to win the second set 25-23. And then they finished off the sweep with a 25-18 win in the third set.

Still, Lang was pleased with how her team competed.

“It’s these freshman girls that are amazing volleyball players learning to play at the varsity level,” she said. “So I think each game they start to calm down and figure it out and they made fewer errors. Their confidence and knowledge of the game are improving.”

Mancos (1-6, 0-4 SJBL) travels to Dolores (1-7, 0-3 SJBL) on Tuesday for the Bears’ homecoming.

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