Skilled Meeker squad tops Soroco |

Skilled Meeker squad tops Soroco

— Losing a close Thursday night match to Vail Christian, Soroco volleyball coach Betsy Photos said her team needed to concentrate on mental aspects of discipline and focus heading into its Friday match against a tough squad from Meeker.

“They’re always one of the top teams in the league,” Photos said. “We can handle them, but we need to be at the top of our game.”

Instead of this necessary killer instinct going into the game, Rams senior Emily Strait compared her team’s look in their first game Friday against Meeker to that of a deer caught in headlights.

Soroco struggled early against Meeker, going down 19-1 before mounting a brief offensive surge with a nice play from starters Emily Hallenbeck and Sarajane Rossi. With play that looked as polished as its choreographed, high-five point celebrations, Meeker won the game, 25-8.

In Game 2, the Rams began to pick away at the Cowboys, finding seams in their defense, jumping ahead to a 9-5 lead with back-to-back kills by Amanda Wilson and Rossi. But as the Rams began giving up plays at the net, the Cowboys regained the lead and pulled away to end the game, 25-15.

Facing a loss and down two games, the Rams played their third game with a sense of urgency, keeping the game close with three kills from Rossi and a series of Meeker miscues that tied the game at 17.

After Meeker retook the lead with tough serves and kills from outside hitter Erin Watson, Photos called a timeout, down 18-22.

“In the huddle we were all saying how, ‘We want to this to go to five,'” Strait said.

“We really brought the intensity up there,” senior Jennifer Block said.

With a decisive kill by Wilson that tied the game at 23, the Rams failed to minimize the mistakes to secure the win. Meeker won the final game, 25-23.

“We weren’t playing well in the first,” Photos said, proud of her team’s growth throughout the match. “By the third game, we were playing like I knew we could.”

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