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Volleyball wraps up successful week

Rangers won both of their matches during the week before a nice run in a tournament hosted by Sisters
by: Loren Nibbe Genna Settle uses her outstanding leaping ability to contribute along the front line for Estacada despite giving up almost a foot to other players.

After wrapping up their nonleague schedule with a win against Yamhill, the Rangers got off to a good start in their league schedule with a decisive win over Gladstone last Thursday.

The week began with a matchup against Yamhill last Tuesday and the Rangers got out of the gates quickly. The first two games both went to the Rangers, 25-22 and 25-21, but that's when things got interesting.

The Tigers eventually recovered from their slow start and made things interesting by winning both of the next two games, 25-19 and 26-24, to force a tiebreaker. Fortunately for Estacada, they kept their cool and dominated the tiebreak, winning 15-7 to earn the match victory. Freshman Sarah Davies led the Rangers in this match, notching 13 kills to go with a hitting percentage of 40.7 percent.

On Thursday, the Rangers saw league rival Gladstone come to town, where things went a bit more smoothly. Estacada swept the match, winning the three games 25-13, 25-12 and 25-8 to jump to the top of the Tri-Valley League standings. Katie Nation played well for the Rangers throughout this match, tallying seven aces without any serving errors.

The busy week did not end there, however, as the Rangers spent Saturday in Sisters for an all-day tournament against some of the best teams in the state.

The tournament opened with Estacada matched up against the number one ranked team in the state, Sisters, and things didn't go very well. Still tired from the trip over, the Rangers fell 21-9 and 21-14 in the first of three pool play matches.

Fortunately, the team rallied in the second match of pool play against Cascade, sweeping both games 21-17 and 21-15. This match featured 20 kills and seven aces for the Rangers.

In the third and final match of pool play, Estacada continued to roll against Newport, winning 21-10 and 21-15 to advance into the winners bracket.

In what head coach Shawna Lippert described as the team's best match of the day, the Rangers found themselves paired with Burns in the quarterfinals. After taking control early, Estacada ran out of steam late in the first game before falling 25-19. Looking to comeback against Burns, the Rangers once again came out hot in the second game, but once again a late rally from Burns ended their tournament hopes with a score of 25-21.

'Our offense was amazing but their defense was better,' Lippert said. 'I'm so pleased with our tenacious offense this year, but after this tournament we realized we need to work harder in the gym this week.'

Burns went on to beat Sisters in the finals of the tournament.

Sam Hammons and Genna Settle were the stars of the tournament for the Rangers, as Hammons recorded 16 kills while Settle recorded the team's highest hitting percentage at 32.3 percent.

The Rangers continue league play this week as they play host to Madras at 6 p.m. Thursday.