Posted Wednesday October 19, 2011
STANFIELD - It took four days for the Stanfield Tigers to defeat the Irrigon Knights 3-0 with set scores of 25-22, 25-20 and 25-16. The match began on Thursday, October 13, 2011 and concluded on Monday, October 17, 2011. The interruption in play occured when play was suspended in the third set following an injury to Sierra Gilman of Irrigon. Gilman was knocked unconscious and required transport by ambulance to Good Shepherd hospital. She was the second player to be injured in the match as Ashli Roberts had gone down in the second set with an injury to her right side.
Before those anzious moments took place the match looked like a good one between the overall records of 8-10 Tigers and the 10-5 Knights. Their league records were even closer so it looked like a good match.
The first set started off with the teams exchanging the lead until Stanfield took the 7-5 lead and immediately gave the serve back to Irrigon. The teams alternated sideouts until Emma Gabriel of the Tigers went on a three point run of serve to give Stanfield the 17-10 lead. The teams went back to alternating sideouts with Irrigon chipping away at the Tigers lead. Stanfield put together scoring opportunities that gave them the 25-22 win. The teams had a couple of long volleys and a couple of winners during the entire first set.
Stanfield came roaring out of the gate at the start of the second set. Emma Gabriel opened up with a run of serve scoring 7 points before Irrigon forced the sideout. Ashli Roberts then served up two winners for the Knights cutting Stanfield's lead to 7-4. With the score at 12-7 Alisen Neasham of Stanfield served up an ace along with two other points pushing the Tigers' lead to 14-7. By this point the gym was rocking with the visiting fans from Irrigon every bit as loud as the hometown Tiger fans. Irrigon clawed their way back into the game closing to within tw at 22-20. Nathalie Campos was serving for Irrigon when Ashli Roberts went down following a collision with a teammate. Roberts laid on the court for several minutes with what appeared tp be an injury to her right side just below the ribcage. After regaining her breath Roberts was helped off the court. After that extended time out Stanfield took control with Alisen Neasham nailing an ace along the far sideline. A net infraction by Irrigon and Stanfield took the second set 25-20.
The Irrigon players seemed to coume out fire up at the start of the third set. They have come from behind against other teams this year. The Knights appeared to be focused on the opportunity of controlling the third set. Stanfield had good teamwork going during the match and a fine touch on the serves. In the opening moments of the third set the teams exchanged the lead three times. Alisen Neasham was serving with Stanfield leading 5-4. Neasham hit two aces and a winner. That gave Stanfield the 6-4 lead.
Things took a dangerous turn with the next serve. Neasham served the ball and Irrigon kept it alive. Stanfield hit a strong shot to near the right front zone line. Two players, one of which was Sierra Gilman, dove for the ball as it tailed off and down. Both players appeared to have their arms out ready for the double handed bump. Usually players avoid contact but in this case one of the players swung their arms upward hitting Gilman with an uppercut of both arms. The uppercut instantly knocked out Gilman who then fell to the court hitting her head again as she collapsed to the floor. Play continued for several seconds until the point went to Stanfield. As the play continued first one then two Irrigon players started calling out that they needed help. Gilman laid there motionless as Irrigon coaches raced over to where she was laying. The referees came over as Irrigon players moved back towards their bench. Stanfield players moved to their bench. Stanfield staff came over to join the Irrigon coaches as they leaned over the stricken player. The ambulance was called and arrived several minutes following the collision. Once the EMTs arrived it only took about five minutes for Gilman to be loaded onto a backboard and loaded onto the guerney and wheeled out. Stanfield fans acknowledged Gilman as she left the gym.
Irrigon players were obviously emotionally struck by the accident and serious situation that had just happened. Irrigon head coach Blaine Ganvoa discussed the situation with the officials and Stanfield coaches. He requested that the match be suspended and completed at a later time. The officials apparently were in agreement and coach Ganvoa talked to the crowd about the suspension of the match and how it might be handled by the OSAA. The large crowd, now very subdued, filed out of the Stanfield gym.
Four days later - Monday, October 17, 2011
The Irrigon Knights had eight players suited up for the completion of the match with the Stanfield Tigers at 5PM on Monday, October 17th. Sierra Gilman had been released from the hospital and Ashli Roberts was still unable to play.
The Stanfield gym had only a small number of spectators compared with the crowd that was in attendance on Thursday. Stanfield had their full team and looked like they wanted to finish the match. The scoreboard had the score as it was Thursday - Stanfield led 7-4.
Stnafield served and Irrigon immediately got the sideout. The teams then exchanged serves with Stanfield stretching the lead to 12-7. The teams had some rather long volleys and Irrigon chipped away at Stanfield's lead. Ana Carmona of Irrigon three point run of serve cutting Stanfield's lead to 14-12. Irrigon's spirits seemed to be rising then Mariella Carrillo of Stanfield had a nice run serve and the Tigers scored five points to take the 21-13 lead. Stanfield dominated the end of the third set and cruised to a 25-16 win for the 3-0 win. Stanfield had some nice volleys, kills and defensive plays in the third set.
Photos by Terry Aichele