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Skylar Robinson will lead Montezuma-Cortez volleyball

Skylar Robinson, photographed after she was named Intermountain League all-conference honorable mention in 2016, will lead the Montezuma-Cortez volleyball team in 2024. Courtesy photo
New head coach preps Panthers for new season

A new season inspires fresh optimism for a youthful Panthers volleyball program.

For all the excited new faces looking to take the court for Montezuma-Cortez High School this season, perhaps no one is more excited than new head coach Skylar Robinson, who takes charge of the program after serving as assistant coach working with the youth development of the program.

Underclassmen will get an immediate opportunity to make an impact, after graduating a significant portion of the Panthers starting rotation from their 7-15 squad in 2022.

“I’m so grateful for the opportunity to step into a new role in the program,” said the Panthers’ first-year head coach. “This sport is my passion, and I want to instill that passion into the program.”

Montezuma-Cortez's Delta Suckla sets an attack last season against nonleague Ignacio. (Joel Priest/Special to the Herald)

M-CHS returns their setter, senior Delta Suckla, who collected more than 230 assists on the season. “She brings such positivity,” said Robinson “which makes her fun to watch as a coach.”

A large turnout for tryouts provides encouragement for the new head coach as well, as the Panthers look to build depth both at the varsity and sub-varsity levels.

“Over the summer, we’ve had to replace some habits – but I saw a lot of dedication from the summer program, and we’re already seeing the results,” Robinson said.

Sophomores Marlee Mack and Sarah Sparks lead a wealth of talent from the underclassmen group who look to take on the rigorous schedule in the 3A Intermountain League.

Robinson added Bailey and Delaney Wright to the coaching staff with preparations for the season leading up to the first matches just a few days away.

The Panthers will face all their area rivals at some point in the season, beginning with a trip to Dolores for both programs’ season opener on Friday, Aug. 18. M-CHS also sees Durango on the final day in August and Mancos a couple of weeks later for a match in Cortez.

IML play gets underway with a home match against defending league champion Alamosa on Sept. 22, with the challenges of top programs like Centauri and Bayfield sitting on the horizon as well. A home match against 1A power Dove Creek and trip to former Southwest League opposition Grand Junction winds down the regular season for the Panthers.

“We hope that the community is excited to come support us,” said Robinson, “we’re excite to see what the season has in store.”