The Haines High School volleyball team posted a 1-2 record at a downsized regional tournament the Glacier Bears hosted last weekend.
“It was really fun to play in front of the home crowd and to just acknowledge all the work the seniors have put in,” said coach Liana Shull.
Weather woes trimmed the six-team field to four, with Klawock, Skagway and Wrangell joining Haines. Craig, which has been the region’s top team this season, and Metlakatla didn’t make the trip.
An afternoon Glacier Bear scrimmage against Wrangell and a junior varsity match-up with Klawock were added to the schedule before the tournament opened 6 p.m. Friday. The second match of the night featured Haines and Klawock, with the Glacier Bears being swept, 19-25, 15-25, 19-25.
Haines rebounded on Saturday to top Skagway in three consecutive games, 25-20, 25-12, 25-13. That set up the final home match for Glacier Bear seniors Coral Bauer, Libby Jacobson, Adalee Lari and Jamie Messerschmidt against Wrangell.
The Glacier Bears and Wolves were evenly matched, following a five-game thriller earlier this season. This time, Haines fell in the first two games, 21-25, 24-26, before energizing the home crowd with a dominant 25-15 win in game three. Haines got stuck on 24 points in game four, though, and Wrangell took that decisive final game by a two-point margin.
“I think the thing that makes our team lose to teams that we’re really close with is our inconsistent serves, and we really need to work on our response to pressure situations,” Shull said. “I’d say those are the two things that we’ll really be focusing on, getting ready for regionals.”
Haines relied heavily on the hitting of Bauer and junior Celia Bower. Shull credited both for their serving, along with Lari, who only “missed like one or two serves the whole entire tournament,” and said senior Bauer had “a spectacular tournament.”
“She hit really consistently on the outside, she served well, she passed well and she just did a great job,” Shull said.
Jacobson was strong at the net, Messerschmidt slammed some powerful back-row attacks, and freshman Olivia Wing had a timely block against Wrangell.
Coach Judy Erekson said the team must “be able to finish” to have a solid showing at the Dec. 6-7 regional competition. “They’re just getting better all the time, and their attitude is good. We know we can play with Wrangell and Klawock.”