PV claims title at Española Valley Invitational

Karl Schneider
File photo

FARMINGTON – The Piedra Vista volleyball team went into Española Valley’s invitational tournament hoping for a rematch with Rio Rancho, and that’s just what the Lady Panthers got when the two teams met in the tournament’s championship match Saturday.

The two teams squared off at the Rio Rancho tournament last month, and the Lady Rams picked up the win in five sets.

In that match at the Rio Rancho tournament, PV was missing starting setter Kamryn Gordon, and PV head coach Ron Becker wanted to see how the Lady Panthers would match up against 6A Rio Rancho when he had his full roster.

And it was all PV in the rematch, as the Lady Panthers swept the Lady Rams 25-17, 25-22, 25-15 to take the title.

“They played really, really well,” PV head coach Ron Becker said. “Rio Rancho is a good team, and we played them exceptionally well.”

Piedra Vista (13-4) overcame a slow start to win its pool, which included hosts Española Valley and a one-loss West Las Vegas team, to get to the finals.

Autumn Begay finished the championship match against Rio Rancho (2-14) with 13 kills. Becker praised Begay's play, saying she is becoming more and more consistent with each match.

Bebe Jaquez and Courtney Moore each added five kills in the finals.

Becker said he hopes to see the same level of intensity from the Lady Panthers (5-0 District 1-5A) when they get back into district play Tuesday against Farmington (9-7, 3-1) at PV’s Jerry A. Conner Fieldhouse.

“I hope we can maintain that level through district and into the state tournament,” Becker said. “We’ve been struggling to keep that level. Sometimes we step up, and other times we don’t.”

Aztec was also at the Española Valley Invite and faced off against Hatch Valley following pool play.

The Lady Tigers couldn’t get their offense going and fell to the Lady Bears (10-6) in straight sets, 25-19, 25-10, 25-16.

Aztec (3-13, 0-5) will be back in action Tuesday when the Lady Tigers host Gallup (3-12, 1-4).

Aztec head coach Anna Strauss could not be reached for comment.

Karl Schneider is the sports editor for The Daily Times. He can be reached at 505-564-4648.