By Jeremy McDonald
TURNER, Ore.—Coming off of their tough season opener Thursday evening against Corbett, the Cascade Volleyball team a step towars the right direction Saturday afternoon at the Cascade Tournament.
With a strong core of youthful players entering their Silver Bracket opener against Marshfield, the Cougars showed that their tough seeping loss to the Cardinals on Thursday was just a mistake left in the past.
“We’ve been practicing hard and been working our butts off. As a team we’ve been trying to pull out from ourselves and we came out strong and kept the momentum, pushed and worked for everything we got,” said Brookelyn Worst.
Head Coach Cristina Williams was impressed with how the girls responded following their morning pool play and coming off of their season opener two days prior.
Trying out a different lineup then she did in the morning games, the Cougars flipped that switch and came out aggressive and worked together compare to their games prior in their 22-25, 25-27 loss to the Pirates Saturday afternoon.
In that second set against Marshfield, Cascade chipped away a deficit and forced a tie in points, but couldn’t overcome the hurdle as the Pirates held off the Cougs in the decisive second set of the game.
“We struggled this morning, but we came alive this morning and one of the things we’re trying to work on is…getting them a lot of touches, getting a lot of experience and working on that competitiveness and be fighters,” said Williams. “I’m really proud of them that they came out and fight and were more aggressive this afternoon than this morning and against Corbett.”
Brookelyn Worst lead the team with seven kills and six digs with Emma Gates having six kills herself to go with seven digs. Worst’s older sister Maddie had four kills, two blocks and six digs in the loss. Natalee Federicio too had six digs in the game.
But just as they had one of their better games of the young season, and still looking for that first set win and victory of the season will be hard to come by in their next three games with Valley Catholic, Sisters, and Philomath.
The Valiants and Outlaws were Elite 8 teams in 2018 with Valley Catholic winning the 4A State Title in 2018 and Cascade will have to bring that same intensity and aggression as they did against Marshfield the next three games against some tough competition.
“We’re going to take it from those games that it’s going to make us better and we can still try our hardest and do good in those games,” said Worst. “Learn from our mistakes from those hard, tough games. Our teamwork together, like we’re all individually have skills and just coming together with all of our skills is what going to make us better this year.”