The Parker Broncs girls’ volleyball team had their home opener Thursday, Sept. 2 spoiled by the Arizona College Prep Knights. Picking up where they left off last fall when they defeated the Broncs to eliminate them from the state 3A tournament, the Knights defeated the Broncs, 3 sets to 1.

The Knights won the first, third and fourth sets by scores of 25-11, 25-18, and 25-21. The Broncs took the second set, 25-23.

“We knew they’d be tough coming in, and they were tough,” Assistant Coach Dan Maya said. He added that the Knights always played well.

“They’re a fun team to watch,” he said.

The second set was a thriller, with the lead changing hands several times and both teams unable to build up much of a lead. Then, the Broncs went on a tear and built up a five-point lead, 22-17. This was their widest lead of the game. While they may have been down, the Knights were anything but out. They came roaring back.

At one point, the Knights had cut Parker’s lead to one point, 23-22. The Broncs took things up a notch and got the two points they needed to take the win. Even at that, the Knights managed to get one more point in before the Broncs took the set.

The fourth and final set was a heartbreaker for the Broncs. At one point, they held a 7-5 lead. Then, the Knights went on a tear and jumped out to a 16-10 lead. The Broncs came right back and closed the gap to one point, 16-15. They played even with the Knights for much of the rest of the game, but it wasn’t enough. Eventually, they lost the set, 25-21, and lost the match, 3 games to 1.

Maya said he didn’t have any stats at the end of the match, but the stats would be posted on the MaxPreps website.

The loss Sept. 2 has the Broncs in the unusual position of having lost their first two matches of the season. Earlier in the week, on Tuesday, Aug.31, they lost to the Kingman Academy Tigers in a three-set sweep, although two of the games were very close. The scores were 25-14, 25-22, and 27-25.

This past weekend, the Broncs were at a tournament at Estrella Foothills High School. This marked another return to “normal” for high school athletics, as they had no in-season tournaments in 2020 due to the coronavirus pandemic. Their scheduled opponents included the Willow Canyon Wildcats, the Agua Fria Owls, and a familiar opponent, the Trivium Prep Crimson Knights.

The following statement about the tournament was posted on the Parker High Volleyball Facebook page:

“Broncs volleyball had two firsts this weekend. This was the first time the Broncs took home a plaque from the Estrella Foothills Invitational and it is the first time in program history to beat Northwest Christian. NWC was state champions last year in the 3A. They have as many State Volleyball Championships as any school in Arizona. The Broncs made plays when they needed to. Great job seniors, Tallia Robledo, Cassandra Sandoval, Ernie McCabe, and Lyndee Hill.”

The Broncs next home match will be Tuesday, Sept. 7, when they take on the River Valley Dust Devils. The varsity is set for 6 p.m.

This weekend, the Broncs will be at a tournament where they have traditionally done well:  the Mary Goldey Memorial Tournament at Lake Havasu High School.

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