Photo by Andrew Ottoson
Grangeville’s Madison Brown played exceptionally well during the Bulldogs’ run to a state tournament berth. During the tournament, Brown tallied 58 kills and averaged 4.5 per game. Earlier in the week, Brown (left) also powered GHS to a regular season win over Orofino.
As of Wednesday, October 22, 2014
TROY With a state tournament berth available to the district winner, Grangeville played brilliantly to win in extra sets against both Orofino (26-24, 24-26, 28-26, 25-21, 15-9) and St. Maries (25-21, 16-25, 16-25, 25-22, 16-14) last Saturday, Oct. 18.
Grangeville secured that state berth with a quick win over Orofino (26-24, 25-18, 25-21) during the district championship game Monday night, Oct. 20.
“Our goal from the end of last season ‘til now has been to get to the state tournament,” coach Kelcey Edwards said. “The girls are playing at a high level over the couple of weeks, and even if we get down in a match we have always seemed to shake everything off, dig deep, and find a way to close out the match for a win.”
Earlier in the week, Grangeville topped Orofino (25-9, 25-13, 20-25, 25-14) at home on the last night of the regular season. GHS also held off Clearwater Valley (25-20, 18-25, 25-21, 11-25, 16-14) during a Dig Pink match on Oct. 14.
“We played very well Saturday in Troy,” Edwards said. “Our serving and serve receive really stood out to me. We served at 93 percent on the day. We ended up playing five sets in both the matches, and controlled the fifth and final set in each match. The Orofino match was tough especially after beating them Thursday night at home.”
On Monday, when Grangeville met Orofino for the third time in five days last, the Bulldogs seemed to have solved whatever problems the Maniacs gave them earlier in the week.
GHS rallied from eight down during the first set, with Maicee Conner’s serve lifting Grangeville back within two. GHS led the second game essentially start-to-finish, but again had to rally in the third game.
“We tied it up at 21-21 and then Addie [Lutz] went back and served the last four points for us to capture the district title,” Edwards said.
He added: “It was nice to win in three sets and put ourselves in the state tournament. I have been impressed with our ability to come back in sets once we fall behind. It really goes to show how mentally tough we are right now. Our mental toughness, serving, and serve/receive have improved over the last seven matches, and we now find ourselves on a pretty good roll. We now have ten days off, so I hope we can keep this momentum going.”
Edwards also noted Hailey Sullivan “probably played the best match of her career last night. She had a bunch of stuff blocks to control the net for us. She also had a number of touch blocks to help our back row control and pass the ball.”
Coming — Grangeville
(22-10) will join seven other teams at Buhl High School to play for the 2A state title.
For GHS, the tournament will open at 8 a.m. Oct. 31 against District III’s top seed. Depending on the outcome, Grangeville’s second match will be played at 1 p.m. or 3 p.m. that day. The third round is slated for 6 p.m.
Play will resume Saturday, Nov. 1, at 9 a.m. The 2A championship will be played at 3 p.m.