Little Snake River Valley volleyball strikes out at state tourney |

Little Snake River Valley volleyball strikes out at state tourney

Little Snake River Valley’s volleyball team lost a spot on the podium Saturday after losing 3-1 (25-13, 13-25, 25-21, 25-19) to Burlington in the consolation semifinals of the 1A state tournament in Casper, Wyo.

The Rattlers were playing for a berth in the finals and a chance to finish in third place.

Morgan Wille said two elements that have plagued the Rattlers throughout the season resurfaced against the West’s No. 2 on Saturday.

“It was fun, but we could have played better,” Wille said. “Maybe passing better. We’ve struggled with that throughout the year.

“We also have … mental problems.”

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After the first game, during which Burlington ran the scoreboard and Little Snake River struggled to keep the ball in play, coach Brianna Braun gathered her team to remind them of the moment and kick-start their passion for the sport.

In the second game, the Rattlers distanced themselves with an early lead that Burlington was never able to erase.

But, Wille said a third-game lull in concentration resulted in the game slipping away, 25-21.

After falling behind in the fourth and facing elimination, Braun again called for a timeout and more aggression.

Down 11-3, the Rattlers rallied for a comeback and scored five consecutive points to come within three, but service errors allowed Burlington to regain their momentum and close out the match — and the Rattlers’ season — 25-19.

Burlington later won the consolation bracket against Guernsey-Sunrise in the finals.

Mapping the road that brought them to the state tournament, Wille said hard work and fun served as the Rattler’s guide.

“It’s been fun. We’ve come a long ways,” Wille said, before adding, “We’ll be back next year.”

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