The Cheney High volleyball team overcame one of their biggest hurdles to returning to the top of the Great Northern League — the Clarkston Bantams.
Two days after their Oct. 8 win over West Valley, 3-0, the Lady Blackhawks swept Clarkston, 3-0. The Bantams defeated Cheney in their first two matches earlier in the season.
The game scores for West Valley were 25-20, 25-18 and 25-19. Head coach Heather Zorrozua said her team took advantage of an extra practice last Tuesday, due to a bye in their schedule, before heading into the West Valley match.
“We showed up to play,” Zorrozua said. “It was great seeing the girls get their momentum going in the middle of the season.”
Rylie Pease shined on offense leading the team with 10 kills and seven aces. Peyton Stark had 21 assists and five aces. On defense, Hannah Lemelin and Taylor Gould recorded four digs each. Gould led the match with four blocks.
Cheney continued their momentum into the Clarkston match with game scores of 25-19, 25-22 and 25-23.
In the previous matches against Clarkston, Zorrozua said her team would get frustrated with the Bantams’ defense and would let them dictate the pace. During the Friday practice before the match, Zorrozua and her team focused on shots and angles, as well as strategy to keep Clarkston guessing their movements on the court.
“There wasn’t a moment during the Clarkston match where I felt like we were going to lose,” Zorrozua said.
On offense, Gould led her team with six kills and Stark had 22 assists. Ally Jones and Stark led their team with 12 digs each, and Marissa Peach recorded four blocks.
With the win over Clarkston, Cheney has now defeated every GNL team this season. They have a win over Pullman, and are 2-0 against West Valley and East Valley.
“One of the things we talked about was we weren’t going to be a team that captures a district title and lose all of their regular season matches against one team,” Zorrozua said.
Now that Cheney (6-2 GNL, 7-2 overall) is back on top of the league standings, Zorrozua said their next challenge was second-place Pullman (5-2, 11-5), who they played Oct. 13. Cheney travels to East Valley tonight (Oct. 15) to play the Lady Knights (3-4, 3-6) for the final time this season.