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If there was much doubt remaining that western Nevada County should be considered an emerging hotbed for NorCal volleyball, the local talent continued to build upon that reputation last weekend.

The Nevada County 16s – a group of area 16-and-under volleyball players – teamed up to take the Reno Hi-Rollers Tournament, an 82-team, three-day affair drawing teams from throughout California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Hawaii.

Nevada County’s club was seeded first after having had an exceptional season, which earned a No. 2 ranking in the competitive NorCal division of United States Volleyball Association play.

The local girls dropped a close match to Sierra Nevada (from Reno) on Sunday 0-2 (21-25, 20-25), but met that same team once again in Monday’s semifinal round and pulled out a 2- 1 win, taking the third game 15-11.

The final was a 2-0 win over Players NorCal.

“This tournament was our final preparation for the four-day Junior Olympic Volleyball Championship, which starts Sunday in Houston. ” said coach Bob Rogers, who also guided Nevada Union’s varsity girls volleyball team to the Northern California Division I State Championship last December. “We qualified for the JOVC by winning the Southern California National qualifier.”

Rogers said this is second straight year a Nevada County Junior Olympic Club competed in the nationals. A local 17-and-under team won Far Western National Qualifier last summer to earn the nationals berth.

Team member are Ashlee Barden, Drew Kremple, Meghan Adams, Nicole Williams, Christian Woodruff, Stephanie Bayne, Jennie Bradford, Jennifer Sager, Christie Hartkopf, Clair Tovar and Alicia Landon

Rogers and Cindy Gordon serve as the team’s coaches.

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