Saturday, November 16, 2019

The Park City Panther volleyball squad.Panther Blakely Verke at the net.Reed Point-Rapelje's Nynah Bryant keeps her eye on the ball.RPR's Destiny Ayers (middle) and Jocelyn Ott (right) watch a teammate go for a dig.

Panthers volleyball take 2nd at District tournament

Absarokee also advances with 4th place finish

The Park City Panthers volleyball squad took the hard route to the championship game in the Absarokee District Tourney.
Thursday they defeated Roberts in three games. Later that evening they ended up losing to Custer/Hysham in four.
“Which was hard on everyone,” said Coach Popp. “But Custer/Hysham came to play and our defense was very weak. Then Friday came around and we shut out Reed-Point-Rapeljie in three. That was the start to a long road.”
Park City played Absarokee Friday night. Winning in five games 3-2.
“They had good moments and they had some simple mistakes that we didn’t need, but we came out with a win,” said Popp.
Saturday morning they played Custer/Hysham to see who would go to the championship game. Park City won 3-2.
The championship game against Bridger were all close matches. But after playing six games in three days the Panthers just didn’t have enough fuel at the end to keep pushing. Eventually losing to Bridger 1-3.
“I am very proud of the girls for not just giving up once we were in the fourth place,” said Popp. “They fought hard all the way to the championship game. I couldn’t be more excited to go into divisionals as the number two seed out of the District 4. One game at a time!”
The Panthers move on to Divisional Tourney in Lewistown Nov. 3-5.

If nothing else, the Absarokee Husky volleyball squad is tenacious.
Heading into last week’s 4C District volleyball tournament, the squad had a 7-7 conference record. After a coin toss determined Reed Point-Rapelje would be the fourth seed heading into last week’s tournament, Absarokee earned that place back – in a matter of speaking, taking fourth at the tournament and advancing to the district tournament.
Absarokee began the tournament with a 3-set win against Reed Point-Rapelje – 25-23, 14-25, 25-23, 25-23.
Mallorey Sheppard and Erin Campbell combined for 27 of the team’s 39 kills, as well as two blocks. Sheppard also had three aces while Campbell recorded nine digs.
The second match pitted Absarokee against undefeated Bridger, which went to the Scouts in three sets. Campbell and Kennedy Ekwortzel each had five kills.
The squad then bounced back with a 4-set win against the Fromberg Falcons – 25-15, 25-22, 25-15.
Leading Absarokee was Sheppard with eight kills, four aces and three blocks.
The final match was against Park City which went to the Panthers in 5 sets – 25-21, 21-25, 15-25, 22-25, 15-6
Campbell led in stats with 14 digs and 12 kills.
Absarokee Coach Tonya Steffenson noted that freshman Kennedy Ekwortzel “has done a great job” providing assistance to Sheppard and Katrina Feddes at the net, combining for 10 blocks in the tournament.
Libero Emma LaMoure has definitely been doing her job as a defensive specialist leading the team with 44 digs for the tournament.
And senior Erin Campbell lead the team with 31 kills for the tournament while Sheppard recorded seven aces.
“We played with passion and heart each and every game. We’ve had the chance to play against a couple of the teams out of the 5C and are looking forward to meeting up with them again this weekend in Lewistown,” said Steffenson.

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