LE ROY — For the first time in a generation, Marmaton Valley High’s volleyball team is headed to the state tournament.
The Wildcats earned a Class 1A-II state bid in thrilling fashion Saturday, edging host Southern Coffey County in three sets,
It’s the first time a Marmaton Valley squad has made it to State since 1979.
“I just can’t help but smile,” Wildcat head coach Terra Kegler said. “That’s a lot to be excited about. I’m so proud of the girls.” The Wildcats (20-11) will host Central Christian out of Hutchinson, in a best-of-five quarterfinal match at 6 p.m. Tuesday.
The winner will head on to Emporia’s White Auditorium Saturday for a shot at a state championship.
As for Substate, Marmaton Valley sported the top seed and earned a first-round bye, then cruised past Marais Des Cygnes Valley in straight sets, 25-16 and 25-11, in the semifinals.
Aly Ard had 12 kills and two blocks in the win, followed by Raveyn Kegler’s 10 points and 23 assists. Janae Granere had six points and five kills. Haylee Meiwes had seven points, Tayven Sutton registered four kills, and Kayla Ard had four blocks.
That pushed Marmaton Valley into a championship showdown with Southern Coffey County, which defeated Waverly, 25-23 and 25-19 in its semifinal.
The Wildcats nabbed the first set against SCC, 25-21, but the Lady Titans rebounded to take the second, 25-20.
That set up a back-and-forth thriller in the decisive third set, with the Wildcats prevailing, 25-22.
Contributions came from up and down the lineup. Aly Ard had 11 kills, while Granere registered nine points, nine kills and two blocks. Raveyn Kegler had 28 assists and nine points. Kayla Ard notched six kills and three blocks. Kendall Scharfff added five kills. Meiwes added five points.
Coach Kegler said the girls noticed the banner in the MVHS gymnasium honoring the 1979 substrate champs.
“They all had their eyes and minds set on getting ‘2020’ placed on it,” she said. “We talked about believing in our system, and keeping a positive attitude. We are so much better with positive energy. It was without a doubt a whole team effort. The girls had each others’ backs.”
Southern Coffey County ends the year at 14-18.
ELSEWHERE, Humboldt High’s volleyball season came to an end Saturday, courtesy of the state’s top-ranked Class 2A school.
The Lady Cubs were in Uniontown for their substate tournament, where they won in three sets against Chetopa/St. Paul in the opening round, 25-9, 22-25 and 25-21.
That put Humboldt against PIttsburg’s St. Mary’s Colgan in the semifinals.
“We hung with Colgan for most of it,” Humboldt coach Terry Meadows said, but the Panthers proved too tough in both sets, winning 25-19 and 25-18.
“I thought we played very well today,” Meadows said. “Our back row dug up a lot of balls with 36 digs, that kept us going. We just made too many little mistakes.”
Leading the way against Chetopa/St. Paul were Jessica Myers with 14 kills and Jada Dangerfield with 11. Kirstyn Murrow added six and Kady Hard with five. Karley Wools aded two service aces. Myers also had foru blocks. Murrow and Kenisyn Hottenstein led with 24 and 14 asists, respectively. Wools and Murrow both registered 10 digs. Brooklyn Ellis and yers were next with eight apiece, Dangerfield had five.
Hard had five kills to lead against Colgan, followed by Myers with four, Murrow with three and Dangerfield with two. Wools had the team’s only eiace. Both Myers and Dangerfield had two blocks. Murrow and Hottenstein had eight and five assists, respectively. Dangerfield and Wools both registered nine digs, followed by Murrow with eight and Ellis with five.
Hyumboldt ends the season at 21-13. Colgan went on to defeat Erie in straight sets to qualify for state.
YATES CENTER was in Lyndon for its Class 2A substate tournament, falling to eventual state qualifier Heritage Christian Academy in straight sets, 25-4 and 25-13. The Wildcats end with a 7-24 record.
Crest High’s Lady Lancers were in Lebo for the Class 1A-I substate bracket. Crest fell in the opening round to Rural Vista, 25-14 and 25-9, to end the year at 12-12. Lebo eventually prevailed out of the tournamen to earn a state bid.