LEHI — After dropping the opening set against Mountain View, the Skyridge Falcons rallied to win three straight games to defeat the Bruins Tuesday night in Region 7 volleyball action.
Skyridge, in its first year of existence, has only three seniors on its roster and before the game Marisa Cannon, Faith Crabb and Mikayla Upham were honored.
In the final set, Crabb and Upham came up big to hold off a determined Bruin squad.
Mountain View came out strong, winning the first set 25-18. But Skyridge responded to beat the Bruins in the second set by an identical score and then took the third set 25-20.
This set up an action-packed fourth set that went back and forth before Skyridge took charge. With the scored tied 17-17, the Falcons won eight of the next 12 points to win the set 25-21 and secure the match.
Mikayla Upham combined on a block to put the Falcons up 20-18 and then Crabb doubled up with Kennadee Christensen on another block to extend the lead to three points, 21-18.
Mountain View then scored before Upham put down an explosive kill followed by a kill by Crabb to put Skyridge up on top 23-18.
Mountain View called timeout and rallied for three points to make the score 23-21 before Crabb again put up a defensive wall.
Then Brinley Watkins finished off the match for Skyridge with a kill.
Upham had a match-high 25 kills while Christensen added 17. Crabb had six kills and six blocks. Sophomore setter Katie Standifird had 30 assists, 11 digs and four kills.
Mountain View was led by an explosive game from Janet Kalaniuvalu who had 22 kills, including nine kills in Mountain View's first 13 points in the fourth set.
Skyridge head coach Deanna Meyer felt that one of the keys of the match was the balanced attack the Falcons employed.
"She's (Kalaniuvalu) pretty good," said Meyer. "She's going to get her points. Our six can beat that one big player because we can hit them on all sides. We can contain it by siding her out and putting her on the back row though she hits well from there, too."
Meyer said that the slow start could be attributed to the Senior Night festivities.
"Because it's Senior Night, there's a lot of emotion," Meyer said. “I felt like we needed to get into a rhythm. We’re so young, and we’ve just got to learn to go play our game. We’ve got to be fearless. Our theme this year is 'Falcon Fierce.' "
Though Skyridge is in its first year of experience, Upham is quite cognizant of the importance in starting a strong tradition for the Falcon program.
"It feels great (to get the win)," Upham related. "Hopefully they will remember us and that we played as a team. We're going to fight and go all out, nothing to lose."
Crabb was also happy to get the win on Senior Night.
"It was crazy," Crabb added. "We get to start the foundation to build upon and it's a great opportunity."
With the win, Skyridge clinched a tie for second place with a 10-2 overall league mark. Mountain View fell into a tie for third with Timpview with 8-4 records as Orem defeated the Thunderbirds Thursday.
Skyridge will visit Provo next Tuesday while Mountain View will host Corner Canyon, currently topping the region with a 11-1 mark.
Brian Preece is a freelance prep sportswriter. He was also the head wrestling coach at Provo High School from 1994-2006. In 2006 Preece was named as the Utah Coach of the Year by the National Wrestling Coaches Association.