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Photo by Tamie Meck Paonia senior Mckenna Palmer receives a serve in the Eagles’ district playoff game against Vail Mountain at Grand Valley High School. Paonia ended its season last Saturday with a regional loss to Meeker’s Cowboys and recorded a victory over Ridgway and season for an overall record of 17-9. Paonia will miss the state playoffs for the first time in six seasons.
Photo by Tamie Meck Mckenna Johnson (8) and Poppy Lightfoot defend against Meeker on Oct. 20.

Eagles end season with regional loss, win

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The 2A Western Slope volleyball conference will be well-represented at this week's state tournament, but for the first time in six seasons, Paonia won't be there.

The Eagles ended the season with a 17-8 record after placing second at the Region C tournament Saturday at Meeker. They opened with a 25-21, 25-18, 26-24 loss to Meeker, marking the third loss of the season to the 22-3 Cowboys.

Paonia then won in straight sets over Ridgway. In the final game, Meeker put Ridgway away in three sets.

In looking at overall statistics, senior Mckenna Palmer was third in kills during the 2A/1A WSL regular season with 275, and fourth in serving aces with 46. Senior Randi Rapke was third in the conference in digs with 317, averaging almost five digs per set. Junior Poppy Lightfoot led the team in assists with 250, and was 11th in the conference in blocks with 51. Carly Horn completed 240 assists.

Meeker is one of two teams that will represent the Western Slope at state. In Region G finals, Rangely advanced on wins over Telluride and Dolores.

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