Volleyball tourney kicks off | SummitDaily.com

Volleyball tourney kicks off

The rec league playoff season kicked off Thursday night with a hard-fought power volleyball matchup at the Breckenridge Recreation Center as Debbi Does Volleyball (4-11) defeated Amy’s Smokin’ Hot Tamales (3-12).

Both teams entered the playoffs with something to prove, having finished the regular season in the bottom half of the league.

“We were in last place coming into this,” said Debbi McAllister, captain of Debbi Does Volleyball. “We really want to play well and come out on top.”

Playing with just four players per side, both teams had to scramble to cover all areas of the court, and Amy’s used the huge floor space to its advantage early with some well-placed serves by Jaime Lamb and Eric Nicholas. Karl Jaeger provided strong defense at the net for Debbi’s, but the Tamales refused to be rattled and took the first game.

Debbi’s roared back in the second game, going after the ball more aggressively and spreading out on the floor. Rob Margison served up some crucial mid-game points, and McAllister’s backcourt defense coupled with Anne Chapman’s assists near the net helped give Debbi’s a 24-16 lead.

Amy’s, seemingly rattled by the change in momentum, suffered on defense and sent several serves out of bounds. But Debbi’s struggled to seal up the win, allowing Amy’s to go on a five-point run and cut the lead to three points. After collecting themselves during a timeout, Debbi’s put the game away with a spike by Margison.

“I think we finally realized where we were positionally,” McAllister said. “It just clicked.”

Debbi’s controlled the rest of the matchup, jumping out to a 9-3 lead in the tiebreaking game. Amy’s tried to battle back with good defensive blocks by Chris Noraka and offensive hustle by Lamb and Nicholas, but Debbi’s took home a 15-7 win.

With the win, Debbi’s advanced to the next round of the double-elimination tournament. Amy’s was eliminated after losing a match with Sun Logic late Thursday.

“The first game was great,” said Amy Papila, captain of the Tamales. “We played well together, we were talking … but we couldn’t keep up the momentum.”

The tournament continues this week at the Breckenridge Rec Center. The championship game is scheduled for April 3.

Jonelle Lonergan can be reached at (970) 668-3998, ext. 230, or at jlonergan@summitdaily.com.

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