Posts Tagged ‘Orcas Island’

Olivia Schaffeld and Co. are 7-1 in league play. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Right back in stride.

Bouncing back nicely from its first league loss of the season, the Coupeville High School varsity volleyball team pasted host Orcas Island Tuesday night.

Rolling to a 25-18, 25-13, 25-21 win against the Vikings, the Wolves surge to 7-1 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, 7-3 overall.

The victory also keeps CHS one game back of two-time defending state champ La Conner (8-0, 10-0), the only league school the Wolf spikers have lost to since returning to the NWL last season.

Coupeville made it 13-0 against conference foes not named La Conner by seizing control from Orcas (5-3, 8-4), which could have moved into a second-place tie with a win.

“It was a very long, but good day for the girls,” said Wolf coach Cory Whitmore.

“With varsity playing first, I was excited to see us settle into our game and control the pace and energy nearly the entire match,” he added. “We played very clean in nearly all facets of the game.”

Coupeville stayed in control thanks to its service game, both when giving and receiving.

Maddie Georges and Savina Wells each pounded out seven service aces, with the Wolves racking up 18 as a team.

“We’ve been focusing on our form and consistent energy and attention to detail throughout matches,” Whitmore said. “And today was a great example of that.”

Savina Wells launches a wicked fireball.

When Orcas put the ball in play, the Wolves jumped on the incoming missiles, blunting the Viking attack.

“Our serve receive was especially strong behind Alita (Blouin), Ryanne (Knoblich), Lyla (Stuurmans), Taygin (Jump), and Savina,” Whitmore said. “And it allowed Maddie to find hitters from all angles.

“Orcas was an improved team, and for the most part made us earn our points and outlast during rallies,” he added.

“I was happy to see the girls’ hard-earned work start to payoff.”


Tuesday stats:

Alita Blouin — 1 kill, 12 digs, 1 ace
Maddie Georges — 1 kill, 4 digs, 27 assists, 7 aces
Taygin Jump
— 9 digs, 2 aces
Ryanne Knoblich — 2 digs
Grey Peabody
— 3 kills
Jill Prince — 4 kill, 1 dig
Olivia Schaffeld 
— 4 kills
Lyla Stuurmans 
— 8 kills, 5 digs
Lucy Tenore 
— 1 ace
Savina Wells 
— 9 kills, 1 dig, 7 aces

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Taylor Brotemarkle had nine assists and eight aces Tuesday as Coupeville drilled Orcas Island. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

Tuesdays are for experiments.

Or at least it was this time around, as Coupeville High School JV volleyball coach Ashley Menges tinkered with her lineup during a trip to Orcas Island, and still headed back to the ferry with a straight-sets win.

Blasting their hosts 25-13, 25-23, 25-13, the Wolves improve to 7-1 in Northwest 2B/1B League play, 8-2 overall, with a home rumble Thursday with Darrington next on the schedule.

Menges played mad scientist a bit Tuesday, and it worked out beautifully.

“It was good!,” she said. “Tonight we messed around with some different positions.

“All of the middles got some playing time in the back row, Taylor (Brotemarkle) got to play a little right side, and Issabel (Johnson) even got to play outside tonight!”

The tinkering was done with a purpose in mind.

“It was a good lesson for the girls to realize that sometimes we might need them to fill different roles at times,” Menges said. “So becoming a well-rounded player is important for their growth.”

It made for an exciting, and fulfilling, day for all involved.

“The girls played well,” Menges said. “We had some dips in focus, which we have been focusing on in practice, but overall it was a good day and a fun trek to the island!”

Tuesday stats:

Taylor Brotemarkle — 9 assists, 8 aces
Mia Farris — 4 kills, 2 digs
Jada Heaton — 1 kill, 4 aces
Issabel Johnson — 2 kills, 2 digs, 1 assist, 6 aces
Katie Marti — 5 kills, 2 assists, 5 aces
Madison McMillan — 1 kill, 1 dig, 1 assist, 3 aces
Grey Peabody — 1 kill, 1 dig, 3 aces
Aby Wood — 1 kill

Katie Marti serves up a winner.

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Nick Guay delivered a stellar defensive performance Friday while playing in a ferocious wind storm. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

It was an experience.

Friday’s boys soccer clash between Coupeville High School and visiting Orcas Island was less about the final score, and more about the various feats of strength pulled off by Mother Nature.

Yes, the Vikings left Cow Town with a 3-0 win, scoring all of their goals with the wind at their back in the second half.

And yes, the loss to the defending Northwest 2B/1B League champs drops the Wolves to 0-2 on the still-young season.

But long after the game results fade from memory, everyone will still be talking about the weather, which was rough even by Whidbey standards.

Catching the brunt of a passing storm, Coupeville’s Mickey Clark Field endured 200 MPH winds all game, though not a drop of rain.

What? You say it wasn’t really 200 MPH?

OK, we’ll split the difference and settle on 197 MPH.

Cause that’s how it felt while watching the flag pole at the stadium nearly bend in half as I walked past it on the way to my truck.

It was the kind of day when it was good the game started at 4 PM, and not 6 PM, as the power went out midway through the first half, while the press box creaked like it was about to go airborne and hurtle Wizard of Oz-style across the prairie.

Down on the pitch, players from both teams spent most of the game bent over, while the refs clung to their flags for dear life.

A bird, flying low and lean, stuck his tongue out at the folks in the stands, then regretted it when a wall of wind sent him cartwheeling back towards the far end of the field.

Off in the distance, the entire infield at the CHS baseball diamond lifted up and departed for a road trip, a wall of dirt moving like a bat out of Hell.

Closer to the action, a wayward plastic bag — acting like the scene-stealer from American Beauty — danced the dance of its people, whirling and twirling a different direction with each gust.

Up in that creaking press box, the one of us who spent most Friday nights back in 1999 renting VHS tapes slowly realized no current CHS student was alive when that angsty flick won Oscars — making my shout-out to it probably pointless.

But, anyway…

The game itself, held in the middle of a cyclone gettin’ it on in a raunchy three-way with a tornado and a hurricane, was a scoreless battle for the first 40 minutes.

Coupeville opened with the wind at its back, which meant the Wolves had a much-easier time pushing the pace of play.

Unfortunately for the Wolves, while they had several decent looks at the net, nothing got past the Orcas goaltender.

The Vikings didn’t do much on offense, what with the wind straight-up brutalizing them, but the visitors did mount one fairly intense charge late in the half.

The Orcas shooter came crashing hard against Wolf goalie Aidan Wilson, but Nick Guay, hustlin’ his buns off, slid in at the last moment and used a toe to deflect the ball away and out of bounds.

Coming out of halftime, the teams switched sides, and that was enough to give Orcas a boost.

Cadence Kraayeveld got the only goal which truly mattered, on a ball which narrowly got past Coupeville goalie Alex Murdy, then the wind assisted scores #2 and #3.

With his teammates unable to get the ball past midfield more than once or twice while going against the wind, Murdy was a busy man and played much-better than the score might indicate.

“Big props to Alex on playing both attack and goal,” said CHS coach Robert Wood. “Obviously, his athleticism is going to be a huge bonus to our team no matter where he plays.

“Tough to get him not to be frustrated though … he’s a perfectionist and did not like being scored on.

“However, I’ll say it again — I don’t care about goals. I care about what you do after.”

Coupeville opened its season with games against what are likely the two best teams in the NWL, and while the resulting growing pains hurt, they will hopefully pay off down the road.

“The team played well, but it’s obvious what needs work … space, timing, shape,” Wood said.

“Shape deteriorated quickly — which kills the spacing everyone expected — which kills the timing needed to be a cohesive, functional unit.

“A frustrating loss,” he added. “We played way better than the scoreboard shows, and hopefully next game will display our abilities more directly.”

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Coupeville High School volleyball coach Cory Whitmore contemplates an ever-changing universe. (Photo by JohnsPhotos.net)

Things remain in flux.

As the 2021-2022 school athletic year kicks into high gear, things are a lot better than they were a year ago.

Which doesn’t mean the pandemic has let loose of us yet.

Case in point, Coupeville’s trip to La Conner next Thursday, Sept. 23 to face the two-time defending 2B state volleyball champs has been erased from the schedule.

It’s due to “a COVID issue with La Conner,” and the schools plan to reschedule the game later in the season.

For games and matches still being played, there are several new tweaks to spectator rules by Coupeville’s Northwest 2B/1B League rivals.

As of Friday, Sept. 17:


**Spectators are required to wear masks at ALL sports contests at La Conner High School, regardless or whether it’s an indoor or outdoor event.


**Spectators are NOT currently allowed to attend volleyball matches at Orcas Island High School, but can attend outdoor events, such as football, soccer, and cross country.

This applies only to home events for the Vikings, and not their road games.

Volleyball matches played at Orcas can be viewed on the Orcas Island Booster Club page on Facebook.


**The other five NWL schools — Coupeville, Mount Vernon Christian, Concrete, Darrington, and Friday Harbor — are currently operating under rules set down by the Washington State Department of Health.

Those rules require masks for all spectators at volleyball matches.

Spectators do NOT need to wear masks at outdoor events where there are less than 500 people in attendance.

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Olivia Schaffeld and her friends are a pristine 3-0 on the season. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

It wasn’t flawless, but it didn’t need to be.

Rising to the occasion in crucial moments, the Coupeville High School varsity volleyball squad overcame a few hiccups Thursday, running visiting Orcas Island off the floor in straight sets.

Even with a few misfires along the way, the Wolves never trailed, not even by a point, and convincingly won 25-14, 25-19, 25-16.

The victory lifts Coupeville to 3-0 on the season and keeps it atop the Northwest 2B/1B League standings.

Facing an “energetic” Orcas team which didn’t have many heavy hitters, but did possess a lot of moxie, the Wolves responded to every surge by the visitors.

“We had somewhat shaky execution at times, but we worked our way out of trouble, which is a big positive,” said Coupeville coach Cory Whitmore.

In particular, he praised the connection between setter Maddie Georges and big hitter Lucy Tenore, who popped for a team-high seven kills.

“You can see Maddie feels very confident setting for Lucy, and they have a very solid connection,” Whitmore said.

That duo got their team going in the early stages Thursday, with Georges opening the match at the service stripe, and Tenore and Olivia Schaffeld connecting almost immediately on winners to fuel a quick 3-0 run.

Two turns later, it was Schaffeld with the ball in her hand, and her four-point tear at the line sent Coupeville sprinting towards a first-set win.

Jill Prince was a powerful ally, teaming up with Tenore to stuff Orcas at the net, then climbing the ladder solo to thrash the stuffing out of the ball on a later play.

It was an equal opportunity kind of night, with virtually everyone in a Wolf uniform pulling off at least one crowd-pleasing play as things unfolded.

Whether it was Lyla Stuurmans leaning far back over her head to catch a falling ball, before firing off a winner which sliced ‘n diced the Vikings, or Georges twisting in mid-air to flip a shot over the heads of the defense, the highlight reel was full.

Schaffeld won the “best reaction” award, punching a ball inches from her face to save a point, while Tenore prowled the net like a wild beast unleashed.

Ending the opening set with back-to-back winners, the junior powerhouse then immediately bounced back to open set #2 with yet another knee-buckling kill.

Coupeville jumped out fast — romping to a 5-0 lead, then stretching it to 13-5 — and sauntered in for the set win, with Taygin Jump and Alita Blouin peppering their foes with unreturnable serves along the way.

The third set was more of the same, with Coupeville simply too deep and too talented for the very-scrappy Vikings to derail.

Freshman Savina Wells, who had been busy poppin’ shots all match from the left side, delivered a gorgeous ace which soared high, then dropped fast, successfully nicking the last flake of paint off the backline.

That caused proud papa Lyle Wells to fist punch the air in delight while dancing atop the top row of the bleachers, a perfect punctuation note to another night of Wolf success.


Thursday stats:

Alita Blouin — 14 digs, 2 assists, 1 ace
Maddie Georges
— 1 kill, 9 digs, 10 assists, 3 aces
Taygin Jump
— 2 digs
Ryanne Knoblich
— 5 digs
Grey Peabody
— 1 kill, 1 block assist
Jill Prince
— 5 kills, 3 block assists
Olivia Schaffeld
— 1 kill, 5 digs, 3 aces
Lyla Stuurmans
— 2 kills, 3 digs
Lucy Tenore
— 7 kills, 2 digs, 1 ace, 3 block assists
Savina Wells
— 4 kills, 3 digs, 3 aces, 1 block assist

“Let the bodies hit the floor!”

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