Grace Marlowe had a big smile on her face, displayed a few dance moves and seemed to be having a lot of fun.
Marlowe, a senior setter, was playing volleyball for her Arapahoe High School team in a match Sept. 4 at Chaparral High School
The Warriors defeated the Wolverines, 3-0, with 25-19, 25-22 and 25-20 set victories to remain unbeaten with a 6-0 record.
“Oh my gosh, this is fun,” said Marlowe. “This is my senior year and I can't think of 11 other girls I would rather be out there with. We are an amazing team. Our chemistry is fantastic.
“We're all great friends, we all hang out together and that's a huge component. I've never felt this way with another team. We have such a good time on and off the court. We're all just really weird. We are all very odd. We have team crocs that we wear. We have all really bonded. I dance all the time. We have Friday dance parties.”
After winning the Regis Jam tournament and being unbeaten certainly adds to the fun rather than being on an 0-6 team.
“I think on some level we would still be having fun,” said Marlowe. “Obviously everyone likes to win but at the same time I feel when we are playing our best and demanding the best of ourselves we would be okay. It's fantastic the way we are working so hard.”
Arapahoe beat Chaparral Aug. 31 in the Regis tournament and came back two days later to beat the Wolverines again. And, Chaparral isn't a team that is on the schedule to boost the win total. The Wolverines have developed into a perennial state contender with a 108-13 record with two Class 5A state championships and a semifinal appearance over the past four seasons.
“We feel real good,” said Arapahoe coach Sara Syers. “To beat Chaparral anytime is a big win for us because they are such a strong team and to have to beat them two times in a week made me nervous. I was pretty impressed with our girls. They (Chaparral) are a strong serving team. We were able to fight off their service attack pretty well most of the game. And when we do we have a lot of offensive weapons.
“Our depth is really our strength. I've got 12 players that I feel real comfortable putting in at any time. So if something isn't going right, we make a change. We have a lot of options.”
Whitney Krantz and Marlowe were cited by Syers for their play against the Wolverines.
Krantz, a 6-foot senior outside hitter, didn't display her usual crushing blow kills but put away plenty of slams and soft touch winners. She finished with 11 kills and senior Tess Albyn had eight kills.
A couple times Marlowe raced close to the stands to keep play alive. She wound up with 33 assists, six digs and three kills.
Chaparral saw its record dip to 2-4 but coach T.R. Ellis says her team will continue to improve.
“That Arapahoe team is very, very good,” admitted Ellis. “We battled with them. We just have to do a better job of controlling the ball. We passed okay but we just have to pass better so we can control on our side so we don't get ourselves in a hole. We need to serve strong and serve smart.
“I'm encouraged with the level that we played with against Arapahoe. Absolutely, I can see progress. When we played them at the tournament, they beat us handily. We played much better and battled with them. If we play them again, we'll be even better.”
Ellis pointed out that Grandview started the season a year ago with a 0-3 record but played in the state championship match. She hopes her team can be a contender by the end of this season.
Chaparral lost to Fossil Ridge 3-0 on Sept. 6 to see its record dip to 2-5 this season. Arapahoe, led by Allison Smith's 22 kills and 17 digs, remained unbeaten with a 3-2 win over Ponderosa on Sept. 6. Marlowe had five kills and 11 digs in the win.