LSRV volleyball finishes fourth at state | CraigDailyPress.com

LSRV volleyball finishes fourth at state

Joshua Gordon

Taylor Kaisler, a Little Snake River Valley School junior, goes up for a hit earlier in the season as her teammates cover her. The LSRV varsity volleyball team took fourth place in the Wyoming 1A state tournament last week in Casper, Wyo.

Brianna Braun, the Little Snake River Valley School's varsity volleyball coach, said when her team left the Wyoming 1A state tournament, they would be bringing home a trophy.

While it wasn't the place they wanted, the Rattlers indeed brought home a trophy Saturday from Casper, Wyo., taking fourth place in the double-elimination tournament with a 2-2 record.

"Being top four in the state is a big honor," Braun said Monday. "There are a lot of teams who would gladly take this place who didn't even get a chance to play in the state tournament, so it is a great achievement."

The Rattlers (26-9-3) opened the tournament against Hulett High School on Thursday, winning in three straight sets — 24-13, 25-18 and 25-11.

Braun said the way her team played in the first round was a great way to start the playoffs.

"The girls played well and moved and talked throughout the game and we dominated in three," she said. "The way we opened, I thought it was a sign of things to come. Last year, we struggled to open the playoffs, so it was an exciting opening match."

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In the semifinals, LSRV met Kaycee High School, the No. 1 seed from the Wyoming 1A East Region and a team the Rattlers beat early in the season.

However, on the second go around, Kaycee got the best of Braun's team, winning 25-20, 25-18 and 25-21 to knock the Rattlers to the consolation bracket.

"We didn't pass well and that is something we do well all the time," Braun said of the Kaycee game. "They didn't have one of their best defenders in our earlier match, but our girls couldn't get relaxed and find their rhythm.

"The nerves got the best of them."

In a win-or-go-home situation, Braun said her team stepped up to the plate against Guernsey-Sunrise School in the consolation semifinals, winning in five sets.

The Rattlers won the second set (25-19) and the third set (25-22) but Guernsey won the first set (25-18) and the fourth set (25-19) to force a fifth set.

In the decisive set to 15 points, LSRV won 15-10.

"Coming into Saturday morning, we set goals and I thought the girls handled the pressure well," Braun said. "We knew we wanted to take home a trophy and we had to beat Guernsey-Sunrise to do that. The girls started slow, but they pushed through and fought hard in a game with a lot of pressure."

In the Rattlers final game of the tournament for third and fourth place, they matched up against Burlington High School, which had beaten LSRV in the Wyoming 1A West Regional Tournament.

Burlington won in three sets — 25-22, 25-19 and 25-22.

"We didn't really play any better than our last match against (Burlington)," Braun said. "Again, the girls played tight and couldn't find their rhythm. This group of girls has struggled when they have felt pressure because they have a hard time accepting they can make mistakes and still compete."

Cokeville High School went on to take first place while Kaycee finished second.

Besides a fourth-place trophy, the Rattlers also brought home numerous post-season awards.

Senior Morgan Wille was named the Three Trails Conference player of the year as well as earning conference first-team honors and all-state honors.

Fellow seniors Riley Adams and Natalie Duncan were also awarded conference and all-state honors, with Adams being named to the conference first-team and Duncan to the conference second-team.

Junior Taylor Kaisler was named to the conference second-team along with Duncan.

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Box scores from the Little Snake River Valley School varsity volleyball team’s matches Thursday through Saturday during the Wyoming 1A state tournament in Casper, Wyo.:

Match 1 — First round

(Team — set 1 — set 2 — set 3)

• LSRV — 25 — 25 — 25

• Hulett — 13 — 18 — 11

— LSRV won 3-0

Match 2 — Semifinals

• LSRV — 20 — 18 — 21

• Kaycee — 25 — 25 — 25

— Kaycee won 3-0

Match 3 — Consolation semifinals

• LSRV — 18 —25 — 25 — 19 — 15

• Guernsey — 25 — 19 — 22 — 25 — 10

— LSRV won 3-2

Match 4 — Consolation finals

• LSRV — 22 — 19 — 25

• Burlington — 25 — 25 — 25

— Burlington won 3-0

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