The Chelan and Cascade volleyball teams will of course be favored to once again battle for the top spot in the Caribou Trail League this fall. The real drama in the league comes from the answer to this question: Can any other CTL team can beat the two powers? The Goats and Kodiaks haven’t lose a league match to any team besides each other in the past seven seasons.
“I am sure (we) will battle again,” Kodiaks coach Marni McMahon said. “It’s a great rivalry. We make each other better.”
Cascade, which finished third at the 1A state tournament last year, returns six seniors, including all-leaguers Johnna Rieke, Gabby Brulotte, and Sydney Coffin, and all-league juniors Eliana Ala’ilima-Daley and Kaycee O’Brien.
Chelan, which tied with Cascade atop the CTL last year with a 13-1 record but failed to advance to the state tournament, will feature all-leaguers Abby Phelps, Makenzie Harris and Karle Pittsinger.
“I feel like we’re a balanced team,” said Chelan coach Donene Hendricks. “We have good depth, and special chemistry. It’s still early, but I think we’re a solid team, right up there with some of our best teams.”
Brewster could be the team that emerges this year; the Bears, who finished third in the CTL last year, have all-leaguers Brette Boesel and Markie Miller returning.
“It’s a great league to be in,” said Brewster coach Marcy Boesel. “There’s some great volleyball, and you know that whoever gets out of our region will fare well at state. It’s fun because every night you go out there, you have to play your best.”
Cashmere finished fourth in the CTL last year and hopes to build a quality program under third-year coach Sharmen Dye. The Bulldogs’ turnout is the highest it’s been during Dye’s tenure.
“I know the history has been our two teams at the top, but I never want to underestimate our other teams in our league,” McMahon said. “I believe anyone can surprise you on any given night. We have to prepare ourselves for tough matches anytime we step on the court. I believe Brewster can do some good things this year, as well as Quincy and Okanogan.”