It’s time to make space for an additional piece of hardware in the White River High trophy case.
The Hornet volleyball team won tree of four matches last week at the Class 2A state tournament, bringing home fifth-place honors.
Hornet coach Caitlin Carr, in her first year in the top job after serving as an assistant, called the tourney a “phenomenal experience.”
With the season concluded, she could look back at some early-season setbacks and see how taking on tough competition prepared her squad for the state tournament.
In the end, she said, “the kids finally saw their hard work pay off.”
The tourney was stated Nov. 15-16 at Nicholson Pavilion on the campus of Central Washington University in Ellensburg.
In Saturday’s tournament finale to determine fifth or sixth place the Hornets were paired against Lynden. White River dropped the first game to the Lions, falling 25-19. The Hornets turned things around, however, and grabbed the No. 5 finish with 25-17, 25-17 and 28-26 victories.
White River had staved off tourney elimination earlier Saturday by defeating Tumwater 3-0. The Hornets dispatched the Thunderbirds 25-22, 25-14, 25-20.
On Friday, the Hornets won their tournament opener – and, in the process, advanced at least to the Elite Eight – with a hard-fought victory over Columbia River. White River started its 2A tourney experience by losing the first game to the Chieftains of the Greater St. Helens League. After falling 25-20, the Hornets rebounded to defeat the Vancouver squad 25-20, 25-21, 25-22.
The Hornets were then bounced from the winner’s bracket with a 3-1 loss to Burlington-Edison (25-17, 25-14, 23-25, 25-11).
The Hornets’ end-of-season tally showed an overall tally of 16-8. That included a second-place finish in the South Puget Sound League’s East Division and a 3-1 record in the district tourney before going 3-1 in state play.
The South Puget Sound League had five representatives at the state 2A tourney. The Washington Patriots, who finished a step ahead of White River to win the SPSL East, placed third in Ellensburg. Steilacoom won one of three state matches and both River Ridge and Fife were eliminated after losing their first two.
WR vs. Columbia River: Kelli Kaelin 41 digs, 3 assists; Amanda Mahlstedt 38 assists, 13 digs; Tori Schmidtke 15 Kills, 11 digs, 1 ace; Kaitlyn Nelson 7 kills, 13 digs, 7 Blocks; Elle Thomas 6 Kills, 12 digs, 2 aces, 2 Blocks; Sam Fiedler 6 kills; Sarah Elmore 21 digs.
White River vs. Burlington-Edison: Kelli Kaelin 35 digs; Amanda Mahlstedt 27 assists; 9 digs, 1 ace; Sam Fiedler 9 kills, 1 block; Tori Schmidtke 7 kills, 1 ace; Alyssa MacPhail 4 kills, 1 ace, 1 block; Sarah Elmore 7 digs.
White River vs. Tumwater: Kelli Kaelin 37 digs; Amanda Mahlstedt 31 assists, 9 digs, 2 aces; Elle Thomas 11 kills, 14 digs, 1 ace; Tori Schmidtke 9 kills, 17 digs; Sam Fiedler 6 kills; Kaitlyn Nelson 6 kills, 19 digs, 2 Blocks, 1 ace; Lacee Lisherness 4 kills, 4 blocks.
White River vs. Lynden: Kelli Kaelin 45 digs; Sarah Elmore 19 digs, 2 aces; Elle Thomas 15 kills, 15 digs, 4 blocks; Kaitlyn Nelson 9 kills, 14 digs, 5 blocks; Tori Schmidtke 13 kills, 12 digs, 3 aces; Sam Fiedler 5 kills, 6 digs; Amanda Mahlstedt 41 assists, 18 digs; Lacee Lisherness 4 blocks.