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Indians complete sweep of rivals
Ripon missing starters as RC battles tough
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RIPON — Ripon High’s star middle blocker Ashley Robinson is sick. Outside hitter Coryn Hernandez has been out for nearly a month with a broken wrist. And promising freshman Nicole Kaiser is out with an ankle injury.

Ripon Christian coach Tiger Shelton figured that Tuesday’s match presented a good opportunity to earn his first victory over the Trans Valley League’s co-leaders while improving the team’s Sac-Joaquin Section Division V playoff position.

The host Knights couldn’t win a game but came close in the three-game sweep (21-25, 15-25, 25-27).

“They were missing some players, and they came in flat,” Shelton said. “This was the fourth time we’ve played them this year, and I told my girls that it was their shot.

“They were fired up and played right with them. The team played well as a whole.”

Cheyann Deprue picked up the slack for Ripon (12-1, 30-8 overall), finishing with 13 kills and two blocks. Sophomore Paige Horwood took advantage of the extended playing time and contributed 12 kills.

Lauren Goeppert posted 12 digs, and setter Kelsey Johnston had 24 assists to go with five aces.

“We didn’t have some of our key players, but that’s no excuse,” Ripon coach Larry Keethe said. “We played very well at times and didn’t play very well at others.

But give credit to Ripon Christian; that was the best I’ve seen them play this year. They played with a ton of courage. They were tough, and it was fun to play them.”

“That’s the best that Ripon Christian had ever played. They played with a ton of courage. They were tough and it was fun to play them.”

Ripon Christian was led by sophomore twin sisters Mikaela and Morgan Alger, who turned in nine kills each. Freshman Brittany Petlansky finished with 13 digs and two aces, Emily Lahey registered a pair of blocks and setter Michelle Terpstra shared match-high honors with Johnston with 24 assists.

“Michelle Terpstra was sick and probably shouldn’t have played today, but she had a great game,” Shelton said.

Ripon and Ripon Christian both have two more matches left in the regular season, and there’s a lot riding on those contests.

The Knights hope to improve their current 11th-place spot on the Division V playoff power ratings as they host Hughson Thursday and head to Modesto Christian on Nov. 3.

Ripon, ranked fourth in Division IV, will tune up for next week’s big meeting with Escalon on Thursday against Riverbank at home. If all go as planned Thursday, Escalon will visit Ripon on Nov. 3 for the TVL title.
— Jonamar Jacinto