The Wood River High School women’s volleyball team got off to a strong start against Sandpoint during the state tournament last weekend, leading 18-11 and 19-12 before losing the first set 22-25.
“The girls seemed to take that loss pretty hard,” said coach Tim Richards.
Richards said the team suffered from a lack of offense. During the first set, Wood River had 9 kills, 5 from Lily Richards.
Sandpoint got up on the Wolverines 9-1, 10-2 in the second set. Richards called a timeout and refocused them and tried to get back in it, but the team lost that set 25-6. In that game, the Wolverines had only 3 kills and 5 errors. Lily Richards had 2 kills and Kori Paradis had 1.
Sandpoint got out to a 7-1 lead in the third set, and after the Wolverines called another timeout to refocus, the team fought its way back defensively to 15-17. Sandpoint then took the lead until winning 25-20. In that set, the Wolverines had 8 kills, of which Richards and Paradis each had 3. Wood River’s Ciceley Peavey had 1 and Haley Cutler had 1.
Wood River had a total of 20 kills for the match with 15 hitting errors. Richards led with 10 kills, Paradis had 4, Madi Hendrix had 3 and Cutler had 2.
“As all year long, our defense kept us in the match,” Richards said. “Sandpoint had five hitters 5 feet, 11 inches or 6 feet and they hit over our 5-foot, 5-inch right-side blocks, Cutler and Brittany Bradley, with ease. We tried to match up block at several times, but they would just set the middle when our 5-foot, 5-incher was blocking in the middle.”
Bradley had 14 assists, Richards had 4, Paradis had 13 digs, Peavey and Paradis had 7 each.
“Paradis and Mary Petzke had the only blocks of the match, which tells you about our net defense,” Richards said. “But again, I can’t emphasize enough, that even though we had a lack of offense, our girls showed a lot of heart on defense and never gave up.”
Wolverines battle Emmett
The Wolverines started out slow in a second match, with Emmett getting a 12-2 lead, but the Wolverines fought back to a 25-16 loss. In the second set, the Wolverines were tied at 15 and lost 25-17.
“Again, our short block on the right side seemed to be where everyone was attacking us,” Richards said.
In the third set, the Wolverines were tied at 12-all, then went to 18-20 but lost 20-25.
“Again, offensively, our team struggled,” the coach said. “We had 19 kills and 14 errors. Richards led us with 9 kills, Paradis had 5 kills, and Cutler and Petzke threw in 2. Bradley had 13 assists, Peavey had 15 digs, Paradis had 13 digs and Richards had 12. Again, we only had 2 blocks in that match.”
“The 25-6 second set loss to Sandpoint was a tough loss for the Wolverines, but Twin Falls lost two sets to Skyview 25-10 after beating them the first game, and Bonneville lost a set 25-11. The play at State was excellent. The teams played at a very high level and our young team learned a lot about what it takes to be the best.
“I am very proud of our team and their efforts this year. They fought hard, played good defense, and never gave up. We never reached that 20th win, which was one of our goals, and ended the season with a 19-19 record.”
Wood River senior captains Paradis and Richards were selected to play in the District IV All-Star game at Twin Falls High School.
Tony Evans: email@example.com