Skill and spirit mark champion season

  • Rachel Rivette hangs in the air before slamming the ball down at the Bishop Knights. [photo by Cliff Coleman]

    Rachel Rivette hangs in the air before slamming the ball down at the Bishop Knights. [photo by Cliff Coleman]

The 2013 Frazier Mountain High School volleyball team took the 13th High Desert League championship won by the hard-working Falcons.

by Coach Sharon Lemburg

The Frazier Mountain High School volleyball team broke all the records this year, playing with tremendous heart. The Falcons had to make many changes in order to compete.

Rachel Rivette, our libero (back row specialist) became a hitter this year. We brought up two freshmen, Alexa Fausto and Elliana Shillig, to block and hit for us. We switched from dual front row setters to a back row setting team after pre-season because we knew that in order to compete we would need more versatility in the front row.

Then the biggest challenge came right before the state playoff, when one of our setters was going to miss the game. We changed from a two-setter system to a one-setter system.
Heather Henderson had to set all the way around the rotation, which meant that she would not be able to hit as much. This was huge and we had one week to learn it. With all the changes, we just got better and better as the girls worked harder and harder.

We ended the league season in first place. We beat Bishop in an outstanding match. The girls worked hard for that big win, making it the 13th league championship for the FMHS volleyball team.

The team then competed in the sectional playoffs where the Falcons beat California City 3-0 and Laton High School 3-0. They were defeated by Minarets High School in the sectional championship game, but as the second place team in the Central Section, they qualified for state regional playoffs.

In all of Southern California, from Sacramento to San Diego, the Falcons were rated Number 6 in Division V playoffs. This was incredible, to have made it to this level of play. The girls worked hard every day to prepare. They went to the game determined to beat Number 3 seeded Pomona Catholic High School.

In the Pomona game, we started off strong and took the first game 25-14. Pomona came back in the second game to win a tight set 27-29. The Falcons won the third game 25-18. The fourth set was lost 13-25, and the fifth set 12-15. Every set was close and exciting. The two teams were very closely matched.

Junior Maxie Rosales led the team with 16 kills, followed by Alex Kern with 8, Rachel Rivette with 7, Alexa Fausto with 6 and Heather Henderson with 4 kills. Henderson also had 30 assists, and Elliana Shillig had 5 assists. The team picked up some tough digs. Alex Pivetti led with 48, Rivette with 47, Henderson with 33, Laura Jennings with 33 and Sami Bever with 19. Alexa Fausto had 5 blocks for kills, Shillig had 4, Kern had 3, Henderson had 2 and Rivette had 1.

The team ended the season with a fantastic game, making fans proud of FMHS. Our thanks to all the fans who followed us to Laton, Minarets and to Pomona Catholic. We couldn’t have done it without your support.

A special thanks is owed to all the people who came alongside this team as coaches, scorekeepers and helpers. Special thanks to Nicole Powell, Chuck and Vickie Mullen, Bill and Lark Shillig, Thelma Stevenson, Hayley Rosales, J.J. Rosales and Larry Lemburg.

It is really heartening to have so many who are willing to sacrifice their time to help out. Thank you all so much.

Photo captions:

Coaches Sharon Lemburg and Nicole Powell with their winning team (see names below).

Team members (top left) include (back row, l-r) Rachel Rivette, Alex Kern, Alexa Fausto, Elliana Shillig, Heather Henderson, Michelle Mullen, Maggie Gonzalez, Laura Jennings and Maxie Rosales; (front) Alex Pivetti, Sami Bever, Jillian Carlson and Genesis Arteaga

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This is part of the December 6, 2013 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.

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