Ramona Shepherds volleyball team is peaking at the right time, again.
The Mancos Lady Bluejays have won eight straight matches and 11 of their last 12 overall. The three latest victories came last Saturday at the 2A District-3 volleyball tournament at Dolores High School.
For the second year in a row, Mancos (17-4) is district champions.
We had great crowd participation. It was great to watch. Very inspiring, Shepherd said. My kids, they took advantage of the situation. It was good serving and we put it down. We found a way to score. How did it (the win) feel? It felt great.
A sea of blue and white invaded enemy territory at DHS to watch the Lady Bluejays dominate by winning nine of 10 sets in the three wins.
Mancos took care of Ignacio, 3-0 (25-14. 25-17, 25-13) and Ridgway, 3-0 (25-15, 25-11, 25-12), which setup a championship showdown against Telluride. The Miners were the No. 1-seed, having won the 2A San Juan Basin League regular season title and swept both regular season matches with Mancos. But Saturday was just a Mancos day, as it got the Telluride monkey off its back with a 3-1 (25-21, 19-25, 25-12, 25-20) win.
It was one of the best matches weve had this year. Not only because we won, but we just got a good competition match, Shepherd said. The kids just stepped up. I mean, they just did an amazing job. We had some amazing saves.
Senior captain Aimee Johnson led Mancos against Telluride with a double-double of 24 kills and 25 digs. Jessica Willburn added 32 digs, while Brandy Bundy tallied 11 digs.
Both Mancos and Telluride advanced to regionals at Palisade High School on Saturday for the 2A Region-C tournament. The top two teams advance to the state tournament at the Denver Coliseum on Friday and Saturday, Nov. 11-12.
The Region-C tournament pits the two best teams from district-3 and district-5 against each other. Meeker (13-9) is the No. 1-seed, Mancos is two, Rangely (10-11) is seeded third and Telluride (20-2) is No. 4.
Mancos has advanced to state four consecutive years and five of the last six seasons.
However, it was Rangely who defeated Mancos in the region championship match last year. Shepherd isnt overlooking anyone.
Rangely and Meeker are always really tough. Always really competitive, she said. At this point, I dont even think of their record. We dont ever have it made. You cant think that, because volleyball is a game of upsets.
The Lady Bluejays will face Rangely first, then Telluride and Meeker. Times for each match havent been announced. Check www.chsaa.org for schedule updates.