Miners wrap up season with Senior Night
For one night, it didn’t matter how well the ball was hit at Nevada Union High School.
The Miners (38-4-1 overall, 12-0 Sierra Foothill League) volleyball team celebrated Senior Night Tuesday, completing their season against visiting Roseville (6-21 overall, 0-12 SFL) in a 3-0 win.
But NU’s seniors and their families will only have selective memories of the 25-16, 25-13, 25-11 victory.
There was a mix joy and sadness after seeing seniors Kristin Dahle, Sarah McAtee, Kylie Miraldi, Caroline Reeves and Christian Woodruff play their final Sierra Foothill League game as a group that accomplished three Sac-Juaquin section titles in their tenure.
This year could be their fourth.
“They’ve worked really hard for that record,” co-head coach Bob Rogers said of the team’s success. “It didn’t just happen. Part of tonight is they see that faze of their lives coming to an end.”
There were proud fathers in the bleachers at the game.
Said Reeves father, Cody: “I have a picture of Kylie, Sarah and Caroline in preschool together. It’s great that they’ve been playing all these years together.”
“It’s exciting because they work really hard,” said Craig McAtee, Sarah McAtee’s father. “It’s like a dream because (Sarah) got to play since her freshman year.”
Players were introduced, as is custom, with their parents while juniors on the team spoke about each of the five players for a few seconds.
“(Dahle), you’re like a big sister to all of us,” one said. “We’ll miss you.”
Hannah Baker talked about McAtee, saying she had a “great smile and compassion for the game.”
Alexis Moser said Miraldi “will be remembered for her energetic spirit and her leadership.”
While Paige Carnahan remarked how Woodruff will be remembered for “making us laugh” and her “intensity on the court.”
Co-head coach Larry Peterson and Rogers even managed to acknowledge the Tigers’ seniors, giving them flowers in what was their final game.
NU seniors received balloons, flowers and a blanket.
And in the background of this emotional night, the girls played to their own rhythm on the court, outmaneuvering and outsmarting the Tigers for their 12th consecutive victory.
Woodruff opened and closed the first game with a kill, helping the Miners overcome a motivated Roseville team. But Roseville’s team carried enough attack errors to put themselves in a hole as the Miners steamrolled to a 25-16 win.
Coaches Rogers and Peterson began subbing the juniors in the second and third games in what was a clear show of dominance for NU. Roseville fought off a 25-4 loss in the second game by reeling off nine straight points on Miner errors and aces. In that stretch, NU was called for doubles four times and failed to volley after getting digs. But a Roseville error ended the game for a 25-13 win.
The seniors took a break for the most part in the third game as the underclassmen showed the future of NU volleyball, beating the Tigers 25-11.
“It’s been an amazing experience playing with someone you’ve been around a lot,” Caroline Reeves said. “Actually, it’s more said I think. The most special thing is though is hearing the juniors talk about us.
“The nice thing is we still have few home games (for the playoffs) left.”
To contact Sports Writer Zuri Berry, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or call 477-4244.
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