Durango senior outside hitter Naomi Harris believes the Trailblazers can go to the Class 4A state tournament.
“And to go to state, you’ve got to fight for it,” she said.
So that’s what Durango did against Faith Lutheran on Wednesday night, especially in the third set.
Harris punctuated a lengthy set-point rally with one of her 32 kills, and helped the Trailblazers to a 22-25, 25-22, 26-24, 18-25, 15-10 home victory over the Crusaders.
Durango (21-9, 9-0 Sunset League) is still unbeaten in league play, and Trailblazers coach Amy Schlauder is enjoying the run.
“I don’t know if the expectation was to be undefeated. That was the goal,” she said. “Some of our kids, I think today, we’re even surprised when it was mentioned that they were undefeated in league play.”
“Now that we’re (at this point in the season), it feels good,” she said.
The Crusaders took it to the Trailblazers in the first set, though, and were in prime position to steal the second set before Durango settled in. The third set came down to an unvelievable rally that featured a series of hellacious digs by both teams.
“Long rallies like that are so much fun,” Schlauder said. “Our players live for that type of competition. They thrive on it … When it’s competitive like this, that’s when they have the most fun.”
After a minute or so of back-and-forth, Harris elevated near the net and launched an unblockable spike.
“When Naomi is playing well, she’s a huge contributor physically and emotionally,” Schlauder said. “She’s a senior, she’s one of our captains and our other players look to her for that leadership.”
Faith Lutheran took the fourth set, but Harris took over the fifth and registered a series of kills to finish off the Crusaders.
“That’s how she normally plays,” Schlauder said. “I’m proud of her for doing that.”
Durango’s Jaquelyn Robinson added 13 kills, and Sierra Leone Sanchez had 30 digs.
Sydney Washington paced Faith Lutheran with 16 kills and four blocks.
Contact reporter Sam Gordon at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow @BySamGordon on Twitter.