By Brad Fuqua
WGCN sports editor
The Williams High School volleyball team came away with one victory in Saturday’s Joseph City Invitational.
The Lady Vikings began things with a setback to Valley, the Sanders school formerly in the 2A North conference with Williams. Valley took an 11-15, 11-6, 6-3 win.
Because of time constraints, there were special rules. In the third game of the Williams-Valley match for example, the teams played to six using rally scoring.
Williams came back with a 15-3, 15-8 victory over Ash Fork in the second match of the day. The Lady Vikings controlled the tempo of the match and were never threatened.
“Ali (Erickson) played absolutely marvelous at the net. She blocked, she spiked,” Williams coach Ken Edes said of his senior in the middle. “Lyssa (Mulvihill) and Beth (Harris) started playing and Mo (Melissa Pettit) added with her serving. Her serves were dead on the money.”
Williams took on St. Michael, last year’s Class 1A state runnerup and the second-place finisher in the invitational. The Lady Vikes took the first game of the match, 15-14, again winning under a special rule — the winning team did not have to win by two points.
St. Michael came back to take the second game, 15-9, to tie things up. A third game was played but the Cardinals and Vikings were given only 10 minutes to decide a winner.
The game was tied 1-1 when rally scoring was then instituted. St. Michael got the point and won the game and match, 2-1.
“St. Michael’s a good, solid power volleyball team,” Edes said.
The Lady Vikings ended things with a match against the host school. Joseph City, the defending state champions and favorites to go all the way again this year in 1A, won the match.
“We were up 3-0 in the first game, blocking two or three of their shots right off the bat,” Edes said. “Then they cleaned our clocks.”
Joseph City took wins of 15-6, 15-4 behind the play of athletes like Laura Duncan, Ashley Johnson and Katie Miller and would go on to win the tournament title by defeating Valley.
Edes said he was pleased with the effort vs. Joseph City.
“They started to play real aggressive,” Edes said. “I hope they can carry that over when we begin conference play.”
Joseph City went 5-0 in the tournament with wins over Valley (15-2, 15-7), Orme (15-3, 15-4), East Fork 15-6, 15-1), Williams (15-6, 15-4) and Valley (15-4, 15-7) in the championship.
Williams took on Seligman in a nonconference matchup on Thursday. The Lady Lopes took a win of 15-7, 15-9.
In junior-varsity action from last week, the Lady Vikings went to 4-1 on the season by winning two of three games vs. Seligman.
Williams’ varsity goes to 3-7 on the season and will open Canyon Region action Friday at Mogollon. A JV match is scheduled for 4 p.m. with varsity matches following at 5 and 6 p.m.
The Lady Vikings then head up to Grand Canyon Saturday afternoon for nonconference action vs. the Lady Phantoms. Those matches are scheduled to begin at 1 p.m.