White River in final 16 at state volleyball tournament

Only 16 teams remain in the hunt for the Class 2A state volleyball championship and the White River Hornets find themselves in the elite field.

Under the direction of first-year coach Lina Randall, the Hornets earned their state trip by winning three of four matches during last weekend’s district tournament.

The 2A tourney takes place Friday and Saturday at Pierce College’s Fort Steilacoom campus in Lakewood.

White River plays one of the tournament’s opening matches, taking the court at 8 a.m. Friday against the Sehome Mariners. The winner will rest until 6:45 that evening and take on the winner of an opening round contest between Ridgefield and Fife; the loser of the morning battle will play again at 3:15 Friday afternoon against the Ridgefield/Fife loser.

Two losses sends a team home for the season.

The Hornets’ district experience began last Friday with a 3-1 victory over the Sequim Wolves. That moved White River into a tussle with Liberty High; the tough crew from Issaquah beat White River 3-0 on the way to a second-place district finish.

Faced with elimination, the Hornets won two matches on Saturday to punch their ticket to state. The first step was a 3-1 victory over the Washington Patriots, followed by a 3-1 win over Olympic High.