SANDY — Anyone who knows anything about Utah volleyball knows one of the state's best players — Sydney Anderson — wears an Alta Hawks uniform.
Tuesday night as the Hawks swept fourth-ranked Bingham, it would have been hard to tell which hitter was the Division I prospect as Alta's offense was unstoppable.
"We were even better on Thursday," said a smiling coach Mike Gansauge after his team defeated the Miners 25-17, 25-19, 26-24. "Chemistry and momentum is huge in volleyball, and Sydney just being on the court changes our chemistry."
The all-state hitter was out for several weeks after an appendectomy, and the Hawks struggled while she was sidelined. The most ironic part of her return, however, isn't what she did but what she encouraged her teammates to do once she returned to the court.
"She really just brings confidence to the court for us," said setter Jana Anderson. "She backs us up, tells us where to go and is just there for us."
In the first game it was Bethany Carron who dismantled the Miners with her six kills. While Sydney didn't have any kills in that game, she made her presence known in the second and third games, the latter of which ended on one of her scorching 16 kills.
"The great thing is that the Pepperdine College coach is here to watch Sydney, and she had a great game," he said. "She didn't ask for the ball every time, she was a team player, and she still had a great outing. After all she's been through lately, it was great."
Carron, who finished with 10 kills in the match, said she swings harder and more uninhibited knowing she plays opposite Anderson.
"She just helps us out in so many ways," the senior said. "It just felt so good to come back and play the way we know we can. Now we know we can battle back against anyone."
Gansauge said the Alta hitters are swinging with confidence again and the setters have picked up some new plays extremely well.
"Jana Anderson and McCall Johnson have been working very hard, and they played really well tonight," he said.
Bingham knows a little about how disrupting the team's chemistry can hurt a game plan. Middle hitter Kris Hymas severely twisted her ankle before Tuesday's match and saw limited time. The Miners did get an offensive and defensive lift from Tiffany Godfrey, who finished with 15 kills and 13 digs. Miners' setter Stephanie Zollinger earned 21 assists in the loss.
In other volleyball games Tuesday:
VIEWMONT DEF. DAVIS 25-15, 25-17, 25-19:Airial Salvo's17 kills and Sydney Judkins' 33 assists helped Viewmont sweep Davis. Leslee Hyer led the Darts with 8 kills.
NORTHRIDGE DEF. WEBER 25-13, 25-23, 25-20: Northridge beat Weber in three straight games.
LAYTON DEF. FREMONT 25-16, 25-19, 25-23:Katie King's 12 kills and Jessica Carver's 10 kills led Layton to a sweep over Fremont.
JORDAN DEF. HILLCREST 25-19, 25-14, 25-19: Jordan swept Hillcrest, led by Heather McFarland's 27 assists, Megan Stewart's nine kills and Adrienne Nielsen's 16 digs.
BRIGHTON DEF. WEST JORDAN 25-17, 25-11, 25-23:Krista Kelley had 19 kills and her sister Annie added 10 as the Bengals stayed undefeated in Region 2.
RIVERTON DEF. COPPER HILLS 25-11, 25-20, 25-22: Riverton beat Copper Hills in three straight games.
SKYLINE DEF. GRANGER 25-15, 25-18, 25-16: Skyline had 36 kills to Granger's 19 in the Eagles' sweep.
HUNTER DEF. KEARNS 25-22, 25-12, 25-18:Celestial Alofipo and Rosey Falemaka combined for 24 kills and Centennial Alofipo added 25 assists in Hunter's sweep of Kearns.
COTTONWOOD DEF. TAYLORSVILLE 23-25, 25-20, 25-12, 20-25, 15-7: In a tough match, Cottonwood downed Taylorsville 3-2 behind Jennifer Johnson's 21 kills and eight solo blocks. Tasi Talia added 16 kills and Dani Schaap had 41 assists. Jorgan Staker had 21 kills for Taylorsville.
SKY VIEW DEF. LOGAN 23-25, 25-19, 25-23, 25-6:Giera Zaugg recorded 15 kills and 15 digs for the Bobcats.
BOUNTIFUL DEF. CYPRUS 15-25, 25-23, 25-21, 25-14:In Bountiful's win over Cyprus, Kate Nelson and Tara Cottle had 14 and 13 kills, respectively. Ashley Spjut's 25 assists and Andrea Johnson's 21 digs also contributed.
WOODS CROSS DEF. EAST 25-22, 25-20, 25-10:Kathryn Lovell had 19 kills, while Heidi Smith and Trisha Wright combined for 14 blocks to lead Woods Cross over East.
MURRAY DEF. HIGHLAND 25-18, 25-17, 25-13: 4A MVP candidate Lori Baird had 14 kills, seven blocks, and 13 digs in Murray's eighth three-game region win. Katie Lowe added 10 kills and 18 digs, while Mindy Schvaneveldt had two blocks and 20 digs.
AMERICAN FORK DEF. SPRINGVILLE 25-22, 19-25, 25-23, 25-27, 15-13:Alisha King had 15 kills and Shantell Durrant added 13 kills and eight blocks as the Dons won in five games.
PROVO DEF. TIMPVIEW 25-11, 25-8, 25-8: On the strength of its tough serving, the Bulldogs defeated the Thunderbirds.
LONE PEAK DEF. TIMPANOGOS 25-7, 25-18, 27-25:Jackie Fotu and Paige Palmer both had eight kills for Lone Peak.
OREM DEF. MOUNTAIN VIEW 25-22, 25-16, 25-16: Orem swept past Mountain View in three straight games.
NORTH SANPETE DEF. LEHI 25-17, 17-25, 25-22, 25-19:Jessica Aagard had 18 kills, 12 service points and 14 digs to help North Sanpete to victory. Lehi's Kristina Meason had 15 kills.
JUDGE MEMORIAL DEF. GRANITE 25-10, 25-22, 25-14: The Bulldogs got a three-game sweep over the Farmers to pick up their fourth win in the region.
WASATCH DEF. UINTAH 25-21, 21-25, 25-21, 11-25, 15-6: Wasatch outlasted Uintah in the fifth game. Maggie Bartel and Lexi White each had 10 kills for Uintah.
BEAR RIVER DEF. BEN LOMOND 25-15, 25-13, 25-17:Jessica Petersen had 10 kills and six digs and teammate Jessica Fronk added 10 kills and four digs in the Bears region win.
MORGAN DEF. GRANTSVILLE 25-5, 25-10, 25-21:Shannon Evans had 10 service points, one ace, and nine assists to help the Mustangs down Grantsville. Jordan Chaney had nine kills for the Cowboys.
OGDEN DEF. TOOELE 25-21, 25-27, 22-25, 25-18, 15-10: Ogden outlasted Tooele in five games. Karly Bitters had 16 assists for Tooele in the losing effort.
PAROWAN DEF. KANAB 25-22, 22-25, 25-20, 25-15:Lacy Cooke's 19 kills paced the Rams.
SOUTH SUMMIT DEF. ROWLAND HALL 25-10, 27-25, 25-19: A solid team effort gave South Summit a 3-0 win over Rowland Hall.
REGION 16 N.
TABIONA DEF. DUCHESNE 25-23, 25-20, 25-21:Stacey Stingham led Tabiona to a three-game win. Lindsay Mullins had 13 kills and four blocks for Duchesne.
ST. JOSEPH DEF. WATERFORD 22-25, 15-25, 25-19, 26-24, 15-12:Rocki Lam had nine kills and eight solo blocks as St. Joseph erased a two-game deficit. Julie Laure added 14 digs and four aces.
INTERMOUNTAIN CHRISTIAN DEF. CHRISTIAN HERITAGE 25-18, 25-14, 24-26, 25-17:Rebekah Jongert had 11 kills and five blocks, and Ashley Gullickson had four aces in Intermountain Christian's win.
LAYTON CHRISTIAN DEF. MOUNT VERNON 25-11, 25-12, 25-18:
WEST DESERT DEF. WENDOVER 25-8, 25-7, 25-20: West Desert earned a Region 18 win.
WASATCH ACADEMY DEF. MERIDIAN 25-16, 20-25, 22-25, 25-15, 15-8: Wasatch Academy played well as a team to edge Meridian in five games.
RICH DEF. WEST SIDE 25-19, 27-25, 25-18: Stephanie Floyd had 18 kills in Rich's win over the Idaho team. Shalie Shupe added 42 assists in three games.