The Cougars had no such problems though, staying atop the High Desert League as they swept the match in dominating fashion, taking the three games 25-16, 25-14, 25-16.
“We did what we had to do to win,” Spanish Springs coach Frank Sandomenico said. “The energy was kind of low, but it is kind of tough after playing Reno the other night. I thought we had a little bit of a letdown, but we did enough to win and overall, we’ll take it.”
The two teams started Game 1 off to a 5-5 tie before Spanish Springs put together a 7-2 run, jumping out to the 12-7 lead. A timeout taken by Damonte Ranch did little to slow the Cougars, as they put together another run to lengthen their lead, this one a 10-5 run that put them up 22-12. Both teams then exchanged points before the Cougars closed out the first game after Melly Munley sent a kill down the line for the early match lead.
Spanish Springs continued to dominate the match early in the second game, scoring the first four points of the game on the way to a quick 8-2 lead. However, the Mustangs battled back to within 13-11. The two-point deficit was the closest that Damonte Ranch would come though, as the Cougars outscored it the remainder of the way 12-3.
Game 3 was no different from the first two games. The Mustangs took a 3-2 lead, but that was the highlight of the game for them as Spanish Springs strung together a number of runs, never allowing Damonte Ranch to rally a run of more than two points. The Cougars cruised to the Game 3 victory and the match sweep.
Spanish Springs spread the wealth throughout the match, with Gabby Szachara leading the team with seven kills and three others — Rachel Loadholt, Munley and Briana Parrish — adding six each. Lyndsey Anderson handed out 19 assists, while Hannah Meadows gave out 10. Munley and Kylie Baer also contributed four aces.
The Cougs (18-5, 6-1) will now host Hug Tuesday at 6 p.m. before their showdown with Reed Thursday.
“We play Hug on Tuesday, but we are kind of looking forward to that Reed game,” Sandomenico said. “We’ve got Reed next week and that’s going to be a great match. That’s always just a great match. We’re looking forward to a great match-up against them. Then we’ll go from there. We have to go through and play everyone for the second time and hopefully we can get better. The last couple of years we’ve really improved the second half of the season, so we are hoping to make that improvement again.”
•The Reed Raiders volleyball team continued to impress and surprise this season, coming from behind to upset Bishop Mangoue Thursday evening, winning its fourth straight match and staying red-hot in High Desert League play.
Reed pulled off the upset in dramatic fashion.
After taking the first game 25-23, the Raiders fell behind as the Miners took the second and third games, 25-23 and 25-22, respectively. Reed refused to give up, storming back to snatch Game 4, 27-25. The match then came down to the fifth game, and like the first four matches, the two teams battled back and forth until the Raiders came away with the 15-12 win and the 3-2 upset.
“We really approached this game differently,” Reed coach Kristen Flagtvedt said. “Unfortunately in past games we have put a lot of pressure on ourselves during the bigger games. And going into Manogue, we knew that they are one of the best teams in the North.
“They’ve been killing everyone, and we went in there just to have fun and play our game because everyone was probably expecting us to lose in three like everyone else. So we just had fun with it and the girls played great.”
The Raiders filled up the stat sheet in the match. Olivia Emerson led the team in kills with 12, while Sierra Hooft and Moriah Maluotoga added nine apiece and Meghan Rader and McKinley Chesley chipped in seven each. Katy Fitzpatrick had a team-high 24 digs, while Maluotoga and Rader each had 16. Taylor Stefan passed out 24 assists, along with 13 from Hooft.
“We are just looking to keep it going,” Flagtvedt said. “We are getting into the second half of the season, so we just need to continue to have fun and play our game. We definitely need to focus on North Valleys first though. They’ve really improved, so we have to really work on Tuesday and then worry about the rest of the season after that.”
Reed (13-6, 6-2) now travels to North Valleys Tuesday at 6 p.m. before hosting Spanish Springs Thursday evening in a High Desert League clash.