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Rock Canyon High School's Student Newspaper

the Rock Online

Rock Canyon High School's Student Newspaper

the Rock Online

Rock Canyon High School's Student Newspaper

the Rock Online

The Ruff n’ Tuff Two Timers

For the second year in a row, the “Ball Handlers” take home the title of Ruff n’ Tuff Champions.
media by Quinn Barton
Back-to-back champions, The Ball Handlers Pt.2, hold up their trophy after beating runner-ups Ray Made Me in the Ruff n’ Tuff Tournament Sept. 18. The Ball Handlers Pt.2 wore blackout clothing with face paint. The team was led by senior captains Addie Waller, Meagan Carley and Julia Hay. “Our team this year was just about the same as last year,” Waller said. “Having a super tall team and a few boys volleyball players definitely helped, but we all just did it for fun.”

The leather sound of bouncing volleyballs echoes off the floors of the main and auxiliary gyms, as teams prepare to play for the title of Ruff n’ Tuff Champions. 

Ruff n’ Tuff, an annual Homecoming boys volleyball tournament, began with preliminaries the morning of Sept. 18. Finals took place that night at 6:00 p.m., with the final match played at 8:30 p.m. 22 teams played for 11 spots in finals. There were 27 teams that participated in Ruff n’ Tuff.  

The games lasted for one 12-minute set, with teams trying to rack up as many points as they could get. Colorado High Schools Activities Association (CHSAA) rules are a three-set match volleyball game that consists of two sets to 25 points, followed by a third set to 15 points. Varsity volleyball is a five-set match game with four sets to 25 points with a fifth if needed to 15 points. 

Many of the players on the Ruff n’ Tuff teams didn’t play volleyball for the school or had never played under CHSAA’s rules. 

“No one on my team plays volleyball for the school,” Guys with Great Personalities player Chris Haynes ‘24 said. 

The Guys with Great Personalities team was coached by seniors Brooke Jones and Claire Coddington. Jones played four years of volleyball, however, the players on the team had no experience with the game. The team lost in the second round. 

“Our team didn’t do anything leading up to the games which led to us definitely being underprepared and not very good,” Haynes said. 

Team Moody Judys was another senior team with no experience in CHSAA volleyball. The team was led by senior coaches Libby Emery and Alex Royal. In the first round, the team went up against the junior team Midnight Lucious, and lost. 

“We beat them last year, and this year. But, during Wish Week, we also beat them in dodgeball,” Midnight Lucious player Jacob Woods ‘25 said. 

Like other teams, they didn’t practice very much leading up to the tournament, making mistakes during the games.

“Our team actually did not have any practice at all, so we just did a warmup like five minutes before the game,” Emery said. “[It was hard] to watch one of our players whiff two serves in a row.” 

Some teams faced more challenges than others.  

“We started with a bye in the prelims, so we played for the first time on Monday [night], and after four games, we won the whole thing,” Ball Handlers Pt. 2 Coach Meagan Carley ‘24 said. 

Even with a roster of volleyball players, including Ethan Sealock ‘24 and Trevor Olsen ‘24, both members of the school’s varsity volleyball team, along with a few that had played in the past on their team, they still made mistakes throughout the tournament. 

“Watching them mess up little things, like missing a serve, was tough,” Carley said. “Half of them have played some sort of volleyball and they were just taking it too seriously and making simple mistakes.”

The final match was played by Ball Handlers Pt. 2 and Ray Made Me Do It; the defending champions beat the opposing team. 

“We all wanted to be a part of Homecoming Week and had to come back to defend our title from last year,” Ball Handlers Pt. 2 player Trevor Januzzi ‘24 said.

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