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Girls' volleyball wins Caruthers Tournament

The set went up and smack! A kill went straight to the ground. The silence in the host gym was deafening as the ball bounced lifeless into the corner. With the summer drawing to a close, the volleyball team turned early season success and won the Caruthers Tournament on Sept. 7.

The team defeated Orosi in the semi finals and Kingsburg in the finals losing only one game in the whole tournament. Later Michelle Nachtigall, ?04, and Tiffany Kaiser, ?03, were honored with All-Tournament awards.

“I am so excited about the results of the tournament,” Kaiser said. “We really came together and worked out all of the kinks. I am so excited about the way we played as a team! It was a really gratifying experience. The All-Tournament award was great too.”

When the team split the two matches against rivals on the coast during Sept. 13-14, the girls said they will continue to use the Caruthers Tournament as a springboard to propel them to the next level.

“I think that we really stepped it up, and played with great unity in the tournament,” Sara Wiens, ?04, said. “We used the Caruther’s Tourney as a reminder on how to play with intensity. I think we continued that against Coast Union and Mission Prep.

The team’s captain and setter is Carli Albrechtson, ’03. She has been playing volleyball for eight years. Her highlight of volleyball is the relationships she makes with her teammates.

“I think one of my main roles as a captain, is just to encourage the girls to do their best, and always put forth my best so that we will work our hardest,” Albrechtson said. “Also I want to pump up the team’s intensity level because, when we are pumped, we perform our best.”

Her teammates agree saying her encouraging words and positive feedback are a big part of the team’s performances.

As the team’s left back, Lindsey Martens, ?05, has been playing volleyball for five years. Martens, along with the other team members, have been influenced by Albrechtson’s attitude.

“She always has a smile on her face, a word of encouragement, and always setting a good example for the team,” Martens said. “Albrechtson is very responsible and willing, and she has great leadership skills which she exhibits on and off the court.”

This season is filled with sweat, bruises, and high adrenaline. The harder the practices, the better the volleyball team seems to perform. While the team has struggled during the summer with team flow, the coach said hard work is beginning to pay off.

Coach Larry Orender has driven his team incessantly on the basics and team play. He has been coaching for seven years.

“My expectations for this year is what I always expect from my teams,” Orender said. “We will start at one level in August, work as hard as we can and see how far we can get in three months.”

As one of the outside hitters, Nachtigall has been playing volleyball for seven years. Along with her teammates, Nachtigall is anticipating a West Sierra League championship for the third year in a row. Her role as encourager on and off the court has focused her teammates to always do their best and never settle for anything less. Yet she too praises Albrechtson for her work ethic.

“I think that my role on the team this year is to be a good encouragement and to become a consistent hitter while contributing to the team in all that I can,” Nachtigall said. “I do not think myself or anyone on the team could have gotten where we are without Albrechtson’s positive spirit. She is always cheering the team up and motivating us to do our best.”

Earlier the team won its first game against Dos Palos on Sept. 3 when they dominated in the Broncos, 3-0. Recently, the team beat Coast Union, 3-2, for the first time in school history on Sept. 12 and lost their first game at Mission Prep, 1-3.

Girls’ volleyball currently has a 7-1 overall record. Volleyball’s next game is at Fowler on Sept. 17 and the team will host Caruthers on Sept. 19.” “Sheree Temple, Photographer” “With a undefeated season on the line, the girl’ volleyball team defeated Kingsburg in the Caruthers Tournament on Sept. 7. Team leader Michelle Nachtigal, ?04, above, spiking the ball and Tiffany Kaiser, ?03, each led their team with All-Tournament selections.” “” “” “

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    Sydney BelmontDec 12, 2013 at 12:03 am

    It’s so cool seeing something of Casey from so long ago. He doesn’t even look the same. This is a great memory for him.