Wendy Alexander/The Madera Tribune
Madera’s Katelyn Siegl tips a ball past the Roosevelt blocker during Thursday’s three-set victory. Siegl led the Coyotes with 10 kills.
The first game of the year for the Madera Coyote girls volleyball team had an extra meaning for second-year head coach Meghan Haas.
The Coyotes faced the Roosevelt-Fresno Rough Riders in Joe Flores Gym on Thursday night to open the season and leading the Riders was head coach Jeff Haas — Meghan Haas’ father.
Meghan’s team earned her family bragging rights with a 3-0 victory to open the new season.
“He wanted to play last year, but the schedule was already set,” Meghan said. “This year, we only have 27 contacts and asked if they wanted to play. It was a good match for us. They played well against us.”
The Coyotes came away with a 25-19, 25-19, 25-18 victory. The team now prepares for a home match Tuesday against the Buchanan-Clovis Bears.
“I am actually excited,” Haas said. “I’m not sure why there wasn’t a bigger point discrepancy between the two teams, but there were a lot of good things on our side. There were a lot of things we’ve been working on in practice that I could see on the court that transferred from the practice gym.”
Katelyn Siegl led the team with 10 kills. Hallie Page had nine kills and a very respectable .429 hitting percentage. Alyssa Burton also added six kills.
“I’m really excited,” Haas said. “With Hallie and Alyssa, we’ve been working really hard with them. Our setter is trying to set out of system with them to try not to be predictable. We’re trying to set them off the net.”
In the first set, the Rough Riders took the early 6-4 lead behind three straight Coyote errors. After Roosevelt led 7-5, Burton gave Madera the serve with a solo block. Priscella Torres served up two points to give Madera the lead.
After another Burton solo block, Alicia Velasco served up six straight points behind two Burton kills and another from Siegl.
Roosevelt bounced back to score six straight points to cut Madera’s lead to one. Giselle Morado recorded a tip kill, followed by kills from Page and Siegl to open an 18-14 lead.
Then, both teams had trouble serving. Over the next 10 straight side outs, the teams combined for five service errors, but Madera led 22-19.
Lillith Ascencio put down a kill to get a side out. Velasco served up a point for set point and won the set with an ace.
In the second set, the Rough Riders stayed with the Coyotes with neither team getting more than two points away from each other until Lexi Carmona went to serve for the Coyotes, trailing 16-14.
Up to that point, the Coyotes committed four service errors, however, they also recorded two aces. Burton and Siegl recorded two kills each and Page had two blocks and a kill to keep the Coyotes in the game.
After a Roosevelt service error, Carmona went to serve and quickly got two points to tie the score. Carmona aced the Riders for the go-ahead point. Roosevelt the hit three straight balls out of bounds for a 19-16 Madera lead.
“Serving is going to be huge for us, whether it’s the other teams serving at us or us serving at teams,” Haas said. “We have to be able to serve tough to get teams out of their system to make our job a little easier. Serving is going to be a big deal for us.”
Madera hit out of bounds to lose the serve, but Burton put down a side out kill to get the serve back. Velasco served an ace in a two-point run for a 22-17 lead. Siegl put down a side out kill to get to set point and the Coyotes won the set when Roosevelt hit into the net for a 25-18 victory.
In the third set, Siegl recorded an kill and Lauren Grewal served an ace for an early lead. In a span of six side outs, both teams combined to miss five serves and Madera trailed 10-9.
Siegl put down a side out kill and Page followed with another from the middle for the lead, but another service error tied the set at 11. Roosevelt scored three straight points before Haas called a time out.
After the time out, Page put down a kill, Siegl served a pair of aces followed by another Page kill to give Madera a 15-14 lead.
A Burton block extended the lead to two and a Velasco ace gave the Coyotes a 20-17 lead.
After another Roosevelt service error, they had 11 in the match and five in the third set, Carmona served up three more points, highlighted by a Page kill to get the Coyotes to match point.
After a side out, Page closed the match with a kill for the 25-19 victory.