Sophomore Claire Apachito was always ready on defense in the backcourt for the Lady Cougars, particularly when it came
to defending Alamo’s serves in an effort to keep the ball on its side of the court.
Greg Byrd | El Defensor Chieftain


Alamo Navajo’s Lady Cougars were ready to go during a road trip against the Evangelical Christian Academy Eagles. Alamo looked focused on sideline volleys during practice. The Evangelical squad came out with a purpose, scoring the first two points of the match before finishing with a 25-19 victory off of a net spike by Christian senior Elena Hedrick.

“I really don’t know with these girls,” Alamo Navajo head coach Danielle Gordon said. “Sometimes these girls come out hot and other times they are playing from behind. We always kept this game close.”

The Lady Eagles scored first off of a well-contested volley before Alamo was able to respond with two straight serves from senior Aisha Key, which had Evangelical on the ropes early. From there, the Lady Cougar’s game plan began to unravel. The three-tiered 2-2-2 defensive strategy was not working, forcing coach Gordon to call a time out down 9-6.

Alamo made a push in the third, tying things up 13-13, and then the Eagles decided to play aggressive defensively, winning the final set 25-17.

“This game came down to the little mistakes,” Gordon said. “All of these errors on the court are totally fixable. We are doing so many good things out there and we just need to clean up the bad stuff.”

Evangelical athletic director Matthew Plugge was pleased to see solid competition as he welcomed the Alamo team into the stadium.

“I’m hoping our team plays well,” he said. “Same as the visiting team. I’m less concerned with wins and losses. As long as the girls play well and have a great time. We want to maximize these students’ potential and see them perform at the best of their ability.”

It has been nearly a two-year gap due to the pandemic for Alamo Navajo being allowed to practice, yet junior hitter Hailey Apachito saw positive signs when it comes to the Alamo Navajo season.

“We’re still a very young team,” she said. “A lot of the girls are still learning along the way. But I know our effort is there. What we need to do is continue to grind, especially at the net.”

The straight-set loss puts Alamo Navajo at 2-4 on the season. The Lady Cougars face two straight non-conference matchups, the first of which takes place at Rehoboth’s Invitational on September 23. Another afternoon road trip against Pine Hill will be on September 30. It will not be until October 5 when the Lady Cougars host the Mountainair Mustangs.

1A 3 District Standings:

  1. Carrizozo; 3-5.
  2. Alamo Navajo; 2-4.
  3. Magdalena; 1-6.