Young team beats Jesup in opener
By Sean Kiefer
Images provided by The Scrappy Trib

With only three upperclassmen on the Denver varsity volleyball team, the majority of the starting lineup were sophomores and some freshmen. This year’s team is based around a sophomore core that consists of Allison Bonnette, Reese Johnson, Sydney Eggena, Kate Clinton and Avery Forde. This young core impressed everyone when they defeated Jesup 3-1 on September 5.

At the beginning of the first set, the J-Hawks and Cyclones stayed in a deadlock. Kate Clinton and Reese Johnson led the scoring charge with a pair of aces and kills each for the first 10 points. Jesup’s Leah Becker and Bobbi Thomas helped keep Jesup in pace with the Cyclones with a pair of aces each in the first 12 points. Jesup was able to pull away at the end of the set 25-19 after capitalizing on Denver errors.

To start the second set, Jesup jumped to an early lead after a stellar defense from Jenna Jansen and Brianna Lingenfelter. However, Denver was able to claw their way back with the help of freshman Kayla Knowles and sophomore Allison Bonnette who provided help on both sides of the ball. Denver took a close second set 26-24.

The third set would have a similar pattern as the others, with both teams keeping up with each other. Kendra McCombs of Jesup was a major helper on both sides of the ball for the J-Hawks while Sydney Eggena was a very stellar all-around player and motivator for the Cyclones this set. With the team coherence and the hype from the crowd, the Cyclones were able to push past the J-Hawks 25-18 in the 3rd set.

To start out the final set, the student section and crowd were both very motivated along with the volleyball ladies themselves. Jordyn Foelske, Tiffani Wright, and Alexis Gehrke all stepped up in the final set to put down clutch aces, kills, and digs. The Cyclones took the fourth and final set 25-21 to win the game 3-1.

In a post-game interview with Denver Cyclone volleyball coach Mara Forsythe, she said, “You could tell we were a young team tonight based on all of the new players on the floor, but, after the nerves kicked out, the girls were able to step up and play their game.”

She added, “I’m really proud of the type of commitment and goals that this team has, I’m really happy from the show that we put on today.”
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