Kirtland kicks back at PV to end long drought

Girl hits ball over net

Navajo Times | Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi
Kirtland Central High School libero Jasmine Shania John (center) sets the ball during a match with Piedra Vista High School on Tuesday. Kirtland Central pulled away with a 3-2 win over the Lady Panthers. The set scores were 28-26, 15-25, 25-18, 18-25, 15-9. 


When the Piedra Vista High School volleyball team showed up at Kirtland Central on Tuesday, they expected a fight, but what they got was a full-on war.

The Lady Broncos came out in full force, prepared to beat the unbeatable, and defeated the Lady Panthers 3-2 in sets 28-26, 15-25, 25-18, 18-25, 15-9.

Kirtland Central head coach Nadia Begay-Watson said after four years, her seniors knew what to expect from the often strong Piedra Vista team, and wanted to come out stronger.

“I know that we’re scrappy but we needed to be better,” she said. “We needed to be able to put the ball away and I think we did that a little better today than we did in past years.”

As the match rolled on, “better” became an understatement.

The Lady Broncos did not start the match off shy.

They jumped on the scoreboard with a 7-4 lead before Piedra Vista caught up to tie things at 9-9 in the first set. The two teams battled at the net and tied things up a number of times down to the wire. Piedra Vista had a 26-25 lead toward the end, but mistakes on their end and a kill to finish for Kirtland Central gave the Lady Broncos the 28-26 win.

Piedra Vista came back in full force to even the score with a couple of small runs that added up to a 25-15 victory in the second set.

Piedra Vista head coach Ron Becker said he expected Kirtland Central’s scrappy nature.

“They’re always very scrappy and tough on defense, which they really proved tonight. I felt like they played super-strong defense, kept the ball alive that you would have thought would have went down,” he said. “We didn’t do anything special for them, I just knew that that’s what we needed to be expecting.”

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Categories: Volleyball

About Author

Sunnie R. Clahchischiligi

Sunnie Clahchischiligi has been the sports writer for the Navajo Times since 2008. She has a bachelor’s degree in print journalism from the University of New Mexico. Before joining the Times, she worked at the St. Cloud Times (Minn.), the Albuquerque Journal, the Santa Fe New Mexican, Sports Illustrated Magazine in New York City and the Salt Lake Tribune. She can be reached at or via cell at (505) 686-0769.