By Ossie Bladine • Editor • 

Y-C volleyball tops Banks to extend win streak to five

What the Yamhill-Carlton volleyball team lacks – size – is driving the team’s identity early in the 2022 season.

“Tiny but mighty,” is how senior captain Dorothy Adair describes the team, said coach Jess McGraw.

Since a 0-3 loss to Warrenton in a league opener on Sept. 6, the Tigers won five straight — losing just two games during the run — leading into last night’s league matchup against Corbett (which occurred after print deadline).

On Tuesday, Y-C was on the road at Banks facing a much bigger opponent, as will hold true for most contests this year, McGraw said.

“For us going in, we knew it would be the type of game we’d need to scrap, dig like crazy and execute in and out of system,” McGraw said.

The Tigers (6-2, 2-1) won the first game 25-21, and Banks (4-1, 2-1) came back to take the second 19-25. McGraw noted how pivotal game three was, especially on the road, to gain momentum heading into the back-end of the match. Y-C did just enough to keep Banks on its heels and pull out a 25-23 win, in what McGraw described as a “fulcrum moment.” The Tigers then cruised in the fourth, winning 25-14 to secure the 3-1 victory.

“It was beautiful and fun to watch,” McGraw said.

The Tigers finished the game with 96 digs, led by Kya Ellis (27), Dorothy Adair (24) and Ollie Mattson (17).

“The digging part was critical,” McGraw said. “They were holding down the fort for us in the back row.”

At a Dayton tournament last weekend, Ellis totaled 62 digs over three non-league games, as the Tigers beat Warrenton (25-20, 25-17, 25-20) Vernonia (25-12, 25-17, 25-14) and Dayton (23-25, 25-14, 25-11, 25-17).

The coach said the team served well as a whole Tuesday, often placing the ball in spots that didn’t allow Banks to play their preferred system. Nathalie Frey totaled four aces against Banks for the Tigers. At the net, hitter/setter sister duo Adelle and Cecelia Petraitis finished with eight kills and 16 assists and nine kills and 11 assists, respectively.

McGraw noted how the box scores from their last five games show an even distribution of stats and well-rounded performances from all the girls. “We have multiple players all dancing around the same numbers,” she said. “It reflects what it feels like in the moment, like every player at any given time is going to (make a key play).”

Against Dayton, Adelle Petraitis finished with seven aces, six kills, nine assists and seven digs. Frey added five aces and six kills.

McGraw said the team and coaches had a bit of a “reckoning moment” after their earlier loss to Warrenton.

“We pulled out a list of things we did well and then said, ‘Here’s the opportunities we have to do much better,’” McGraw said. “Our players got into the gym the following day and just drilled everything on the list and started applying that to the next game and they continue to do so.”

She added. “We need to be a team that can execute in and out of system, scrap things up … just need to keep the ball in play. That’s what they’ve been doing the last five games and the outcomes speak for themselves.”

Y-C is on the road this weekend for a non-league tournament hosted by defending 2A state champions Salem Academy, and then continue league play Tuesday at Neah-Kah-Nie.

In other local volleyball action:

n McMinnville (2-3, 1-1) faced Glencoe (1-7, 03) at home Thursday night.

n Dayton (4-6, 1-1) beat Amity (3-3, 0-2) Tuesday in three sets (25-17, 25-21, 25-19), and hosted Sheridan Thursday evening.

n Sheridan rebounded from last week’s loss to Willamina with four consecutive wins over Jefferson, De La Salle North Catholic, Riverdale and Taft. The Spartans are atop the PacWest Conference with a 3-0 league record, 8-2 overall.

n Willamina lost Monday in a five-game match (20-25, 25-10, 25-22, 25-28, 8-15) to Culver on the road, but rebounded Tuesday at home with a 3-1 win over Culver. The Bulldogs (4-2, 1-1) face the same two opponents next week.


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