Sailors find their groove on the volleyball court as winning streak continues

Senior Tya Drennen knocked one down in the second set of a Steamboat volleyball match against Summit on Saturday, October 8, 2022. Steamboat won the match 3-1.
Tom Skulski / Steamboat Pilot and Today

With a trip to the regional tournament in play, there’s no better time for a team to play their best volleyball than at the end of the season.

Hosting Summit in Steamboat Springs on Saturday, October 8, the Mariners took care of business with a 3-1 win to extend their winning streak to four games. After a second-set loss to Steamboat, the Sailors reset their focus and dominated the third and fourth sets for the win.

“Our team culture right now is probably what I’m most proud of,” coach Wendy Hall said. “We see the results of this culture with our success on the pitch; it’s sort of a byproduct of our mutual respect and trust.

Hall explained that it took time for his team to find their identity at the start of the season, but they have really bonded over the past few weeks and the relationship continues to grow.

One of the main promoters of these strengthened bonds has been the sailors’ senior leadership, who have helped keep energy levels high throughout the season.

Senior Ashlyn Robson said she knows how quickly these seasons go by and has prepared the younger members of the squad for what’s to come.

“We want to make every game count and leave everything on the pitch because after that there’s nothing left so there’s no point in not trying,” Robson said. “We have to leave everything out there and make every point count.”

Senior Bella Story prepares for a sideways kill in a Steamboat volleyball match against Summit on Saturday, October 8, 2022.
Tom Skulski / Steamboat Pilot and Today

The win ties the Mariners’ league record at 4-4, as they hold an overall record of 12-5. Junior Sydney Lotz said the team sees a path to regionals and is confident Steamboat will maintain momentum.

“It feels good because we had a tough start to the season, so it feels good to have four good wins,” Lotz said. “We have full training next week, and we have our game on Saturday, so we’ll just use training next week to improve and push ourselves to a second or third place in the league.”

Junior Layla Hammond-Furst serves in the first set of a volleyball match between Steamboat and Summit on Saturday, October 8, 2022.
Tom Skulski / Steamboat Pilot and Today

Two of the team’s remaining five games will face league opponents, giving Steamboat a chance to sweep the season series against Palisade and an opportunity for revenge on Battle Mountain.

Before the league matches, the sailors will stay at home for a game against Grand Junction Central on Saturday October 15.

Before looking too far ahead, Hall said, his team will have to play one game at a time.

“We’re going to look at whoever’s in front of us, but I think they’re starting to believe they can take care of business and they’ve kind of got some power back,” Hall said. “I’m super proud of them for that, but we still have work to do and we still want to improve every week.”