Crater sweeps South in volleyball
CENTRAL POINT — After struggling in an earlier jamboree, Crater volleyball coach Leaf Jensen was concerned going into the Comets’ season opener Thursday against South Medford.
But Crater calmed Jensen’s worries with a strong all-around match, defeating the visiting Panthers in straight sets, 25-18, 25-9, 25-14.
"We played really well," said Jensen. "We were in the right spot all night. It made it easier for ourselves to make plays."
South Medford played Crater tight in the first game but the Comets went on a tear in the second set and kept its momentum throughout the match."
Senior outside Destiny Fahndrich led the Comet attack with 15 kills to go with five digs.
"It was nice to see (Fahndrich) get her confidence back," said Jensen. "She was taking good swings and showing leadership."
The Crater defense was paced by Amanda Gardner, a junior libero, who came up with 17 digs. Freshman Rane Jensen added 12 digs and was the team's top serve-receive passer.
Nicole Morse, a junior transfer from Cascade Christian, provided six kills and eight digs as a rightside hitter for the Comets.
"South plays aggressive defense," said Jensen. "We did a nice job scoring in transition. We definitely won most of the long rallies."
ASHLAND 3, GRANTS PASS 0: At Grants Pass, senior middle hitter Ellie Case posted 12 kills, four blocks and a pair of aces as Ashland sailed to a nonconference win, 25-12, 25-12, 25-18.
Senior setter Karlie Richardson tallied 25 assists, five kills and three aces for the Grizzlies (5-2) while senior outside hitter Olivia Rooney went for nine kills and five aces.
Myla Norvell, a junior libero, added 18 digs and three aces for the Grizzlies.
CASCADE CHRISTIAN 3, EAGLE POINT 0: Senior setter Alyssa Brown dished out 21 assists and pounded four aces as Cascade Christian won the home match, 25-14, 25-8, 25-18.
Eagle Point (0-2) had difficulty passing against the aggressive serving by the Challengers (1-1).
Cascade front-line players Ellie Brown and Claire Hawkins combined for 13 kills.
ST. MARY'S SPLITS: St. Mary's defeated Gold Beach, 25-20, 25-19, 25-20, but dropped the nightcap to Glide, 25-17, 25-11, 25-18.
Against Gold Beach, junior middle Madi Christensen had 11 kills and two blocks and Katie Rietmann added six kills.
Ashley Rietmann led the Crusaders in serving with an 18-for-19 effort, including five aces. MacKenzie Addington was St. Mary's defensive mainstay with 10 digs and was perfect on 11 serves with three aces.
In the second match, Glide's key was strong hitting and tough serving.
Christensen paced the Crusaders with six kills and Ashley Rietmann had 10 assists.
Emily Johnson, a senior rightside hitter, combined for 18-for-18 serving and three aces in both matches for St. Mary's (1-2).
WESTVIEW 3, GRANTS PASS 0: At Portland, Grants Pass received strong performances from captains Cameron Marzi, Jonathan Williams and Isiah Camacho in a season-opening loss.
The Cavemen (0-1) trailed 1-0 at halftime.
Westview took advantage of some defensive breakdowns by Grants Pass and scored two goals during a five-minute span of the second half.
ASHLAND 9, KLAMATH UNION 2: At Ashland, Stenley Graham punched in four goals and Ashland scored two goals less than two minutes into the start of the game in the nonconference matchup at Ashland Middle School.
Lars Filson scored in the first minute and Graham connected on his first of the game less than a minute later for the Grizzlies (1-0).
EAGLE POINT 4, NORTH VALLEY 0: At Merlin, senior midfielders Sebastion Tovar and Lucas Gomez scored two goals each in the first half for Eagle Point (1-0) in the nonconference road victory.
ASHLAND 0, GRANTS PASS 0: At Ashland, striker Calysta Susu-Mago helped give Ashland enough offensive opportunities but the Grizzlies couldn’t break the ice at North Mountain Park.
Goalkeeper Sinad Pyle led the shutout by making several saves for the Grizzlies (0-2).
NORTH VALLEY 1, CASCADE CHRISTIAN 0: Cascade Christian played North Valley evenly throughout but the Knights jumped on a golden opportunity early on in their nonconference victory at U.S. Cellular Community Park.
Baylee Toney gathered up a failed clearance by the Challengers’ defense and netted from close range to put the Knights up 1-0 in the 10th minute.
Challengers goalkeeper Audrey Quast made a handful of stops, including diving stop on a penalty kick in the 71st minute to keep Cascade Christian (0-2) in the contest.
EAGLE POINT FRESHMEN 50, ROGUE RIVER 42: At Eagle Point, junior Jaden Bliven tallied four touchdowns for Rogue River in the season-opening loss.
Bliven scored on kickoff returns of 81 and 41 yards and returned a fumble for a 77-yard TD. Bliven also rushed 16 times for 137 yards and one TD.
Chieftain freshmen Bodie Byrd and Derek Nelson had fourth-quarter touchdown runs. Byrd broke a 99-yard run and Nelson scored from 12-yards out.
The game ended with Rogue River at the Eagles’ 2-yard line.
The Chieftains had 369 yards rushing, while Eagle Point amassed 506 yards in offense.