Following a long day of volleyball, Norwood beat Dolores in the championship match to take the San Juan Basin League title.
The Miners had a tough road to the top on Saturday, facing eventual tournament winners Norwood and semifinalists Dolores in their first two games of the day. They ended the tournament tied with Ignacio for sixth place.
The Miners had already celebrated a significant win Saturday morning, however, after the team beat Ridgway to move into the sixth-place seed for the season-ending tournament. Telluride fell flat in their first game against the Ridgway Middle School Demons, but returned in game two with renewed vigor to force a third game tie-breaker. The Miners put together a stellar effort in game three, prevailing 15-10.
“The entire team was going after every ball, digging deep and really wanting the win,” said TMS volleyball coach Stephanie Ferris of the team’s win against Ridgway.
With no rest between games, the girls returned to the court to meet league tyrants Norwood. Propelled by their earlier win, Telluride put up a defiant front in the face of menacing Maverick pressure, with blocker Margaret Doody posting four intimidating blocks and three kills in the match. Setter Sarah Wontroboski was a stronghold for Telluride in the Norwood match as well, playing what Coach Ferris called a “phenomenal” game. Also topping Telluride’s charts was Toni Hill, whose digs kept Telluride in the game until the very end (Hill posted 15 digs on the three-game day).
The Miners battled valiantly until the end, but ultimately succumbed to Norwood with a close final score of 23-25.
Ferris said that although the middle school program would no doubt miss the team’s 12 outgoing eighth graders next year, the upcoming players are loaded with talent, ensuring a bright future for the volleyball middle school volleyball program.