The axiom “the best offense is a good defense” can be applied to many things.
Chess, debate, global thermonuclear holocaust deterrence, etc.
Based on results at Eastern Oregon, it can be applied to volleyball as well.
At 13-1 and ranked No. 8 in the NAIA volleyball poll, good defense is at the heart of the Eastern Oregon game plan.
And at the heart of that defense is Bonneville graduate Kiley McMurtrey.
McMurtrey, a junior libero/defensive specialist with the Mountaineers, leads all Cascade Conference defenders in digs with 276 — 44 more than the next highest total in the 11-team conference.
On the subject of EOU’s offense, Rigby graduate Jet Taylor leads the team in hitting percentage at .274 and has 94 kills.
Also at EOU, Bonneville grad Sade Williams has played in all 14 matches and has 88 digs of her own.
Representing Bonneville at Idaho State, Haylie Keck leads the 3-7 Bengals with 104 kills, and ranks second on the team with 105 digs.
Idaho Falls graduate Maya Taylor continues to be the driving offensive force for the 6-3 St. Louis Billikens, leading her team with 152 kills. Taylor also has 63 digs over her nine starts.
South Fremont product Harlee Speth has 152 digs for 2-11 Dawson Buccaneers, adding a team-best 145 kills.
Also leading her team, College of Idaho (7-4) sophomore and Idaho Falls grad Kaydre Thompson his hitting at a team-best clip of .236 on 60 kills.
Also representing Idaho Falls, Southern Utah (6-3) sophomore Katie Montgomery has 57 kills, 19 blocks, and a team-best 15 aces.
Rounding out the Idaho Falls volleyball representatives are Utah State-Eastern (17-3) libero Tiffany Schwendiman, and Portland State (3-6) junior Maddy Reeb.
Butte County graduate Tausha Cummins has helped Southern Idaho start 9-8, pitching in with 65 assists and 18 digs for the Golden Eagles.
Big Bend has opened 10-6 with Firth’s Ashlee Adams and South Fremont’s Martina Wilder on the roster.
Bonneville’s Paige Dixion is with the Providence Argonauts (10-1), Madison’s Lexi Garner is at Snow (16-2), Skyline’s Shelby Squires is at Western Wyoming (6-6), and West Jefferson’s Jordi Holdaway is a bit closer to home with Boise State (6-3).
BYU sophomore and Madison grad Rachel Morrin helped the Cougars edge Weber State at the Autumn Classic in Provo, Utah, this past weekend, finishing eighth with a 5k time of 18 minutes, 17 seconds.
BYU, which also has Blackfoot’s Rachel Cannon on the roster, finished four points ahead of Weber State with 28 points.
Weber State’s Michell Pratt, also a Blackfoot product, did not compete in that race.
A pair of Shelley graduates helped Utah State open the season with a win at the Sagebrush Invitational on Aug. 31. Leann Larkin was 11th with a 5k time of 19:30, and Karlie Callahan was five seconds back in 14th position. USU won the event with 25 points, nine better than Boise State.
Also pacing USU to victory at the Sagebrush Invitational, Shelley grad Mark Crandall finished 12th with a 7k time of 22:32. USU won with 22 points, 17 better than BSU.
Southern Idaho opened its season Sept. 6 in Twin Falls, placing fourth with 109 points. Weber State won the team title with 24.
Representing the host Golden Eagles, Amy White (Shelley) and Shakayla Morgan (Blackfoot) finished the 5K race in 20:54 and 21:22, respectively.
Megan Galbraith (Sugar-Salem) and Abby Hurst (Blackfoot) are also rostered at CSI.
Skyline graduate and North Idaho freshman Berenice Chavez has converted half of her shots on goal into scores for the Cardinals, scoring three times to help her squad open 3-2-2.
Taylor Lance (Hillcrest), Sydnie Clark (Skyline) and Kiani Hill (Bonneville) are also at North Idaho this fall.
Treasure Valley keeper Kenzie Galvan (Blackfoot) is 2-1-1 in the early going this season, and former Blackfoot teammate Elexus Nochebuena has five shots on goal for the 2-3-1 Chukars.
Jamestown senior and Skyline grad Nicole Morrison has four shots on goal and an assist so far this season, and the Jimmies have opened 1-4.
Also representing Skyline, Lane sophomore Bailey Johnson has two shots on goal for the 0-4-1 Titans.
Southern Virginia sophomore defender Emma Stohl (Shelley) has started all six games for the 1-4-1 Knights, and fellow Shelley graduate Brie Stumbo has an assist for the 4-0-1 Monmouth Fighting Scots.
On the men’s side, Northwest College freshman and Thunder Ridge grad Emmanuel Garcia has one goal and one assist in his freshman season, helping the Trappers start 5-1-1.
Also from Thunder Ridge, Fabian Sandoval is playing for Blue Mountain (3-2-2), as is Hillcrest grad Jose Martinez.
Sugar-Salem’s Spencer Dayley has started his collegiate career at Western Wyoming (1-6), and Hillcrest product Jordan Martin is in his second season at Carroll College (1-2-1).