Northern Wyoming Daily News - Serving the Big Horn Basin for over 100 years

By Alex Kuhn
Sports Editor 

WHS volleyball bounces back after first loss


September 13, 2016

WORLAND -Worland High School volleyball was on the road in Rawlins Friday and Saturday battling with other 3A rivals during the Rawlins Invite.

Going against Rawlins, Newcastle, Douglas, Wheatland, Torrington, Buffalo, Thermopolis, Cody, Powell, Riverton, Lander, Star Valley, Lyman and Mountain View and the Lady Warriors wound up in fifth place at the end of the Invite.

The first day of the Invite was group play with only two games being played in the match. From there the teams would be sorted into the gold or silver brackets based upon their results in group play. Worland beat Pinedale 2-0 and split 1-1 with Mountain View.

To win their group and move into the gold bracket, the Lady Warriors needed to hold their final opponent, Newcastle, under 23 points for the entire match. Rising to the challenge Worland did just that earning their spot in the gold bracket.

Opening the gold bracket against Buffalo in a best of three format, Worland was defeated for the first time this season 2-1, 21-19, 19-21 and 15-8. The loss was a disappointment but coach Brittany Miller liked how her team responded afterward.

"Losing in three to Buffalo gave us our first big test of the season," said coach Miller. "Just as we're about to the start game one Bailey Gibbons had a gusher of a nose bleed. We took her out to take care of her and adjusted our lineup and we had a hard time getting used to the new lineup. Bailey was able to join us for game two. But we talked about it after the match how we need to respond better to new lineups because this can happen while we're at regionals or state."

"We responded well after the loss to Buffalo and it was something we can grow from. Most teams might roll over for the remainder of the day but not this team. They knew they needed to finish with two wins and finish the tournament on a winning note. Another encouraging thing they did was they wanted to stay and watch the championship. So we got to see Buffalo more and Star Valley in action," said coach Miller.

The Lady Warriors finished the Invite on a winning note by beating Powell 2-0, 21-11, 21-15 and getting their revenge on Mountain View 2-1, 12-21, 21-16 and 15-10.

Next for Worland will be their first home matches of the season. Friday they face off against Douglas at 7 p.m. and Saturday against Newcastle at 2 p.m. Coach Miller and her team are excited to finally play in front of a home crowd. "It's awesome," said coach Miller. "The first few weeks of the volleyball are kind of a grind. So it's going to be nice to play in front of our fans."

Ten Sleep

The Ten Sleep Lady Pioneers were at the Hanna Invite Saturday afternoon and the tournament served as a great learning experience for the team.

The Lady Pioneers played five matches on the day and went 1-4. In their first match against Lingle-Fort Laramie Ten Sleep lost 2-0, 25-14 and 25-23. In match two they beat Glendo 2-0, 25-15 and 25-9, match three they lost to Hanna-Elk Mountain (H.E.M.) 2-0, 25-17 and 26-24, match four was a loss to Rock River 2-0, 25-22 and 25-23 and their final match was a loss to Lingle-Fort Laramie 2-0, 25-21 and 25-9.

Ten Sleep volleyball coach Desiree Egger thought the tournament was a great experience builder for her young team. "It was good, definitely a learning experience for us coming off such a good weekend beforehand," said coach Egger.

"It is still grind time, there's no let up," said coach Egger. "This week was a good learning curve. It showed us that we still need to play well no matter the setting. Whether that is in a tournament setting, at home or in a best of three ... We're still learning and that's the way it is in 1A volleyball ... Getting exposure to teams like H.E.M. and Lingle, teams that we won't see until state is going to benefit us as well."

The Lady Pioneers have two home matches this week, first against Dubois at 4 p.m. on Friday, then Saturday against Burlington at 4:30 p.m.


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