The Lady Mariners began travel last Thursday up to Whittier, where they then caught a ferry across Prince William Sound to Cordova where the Wolverines hosted the 2012 Southcentral Volleyball Regional Tournament. Homer began tournament play on Friday, losing to Grace Christian School in four sets: 16-25, 25-23, 15-25 and 18-25. Grace was the top seed coming into Regions and the Mariners were happy to get one win in there.
“The girls played hard and did not let up. They were pumped by the win of the second set which had amazing defensive saves and aggressive offensive play,” said Coach Beth Trowbridge.
This was the first set Grace had lost all season. Senior Kayla Hutt led on both sides of the ball with nine kills and four digs. Hope Hudson threw in a team high six aces. Hudson also pitched in five assists while Caroline DeCreft led with 10. Trowbridge noted that her team struggled with serve receive passing, and that Grace came out with a very controlled passing attack.
The loss put Homer in the loser’s bracket against Cordova on Saturday. Homer played great team volleyball and swept the Wolverines in three sets: 25-23, 25-16 and 25-15. The Mariners set the pace early in each set and showed off their offensive power. Hutt led again with eight kills; Zoia Basargin had seven, Hailey Oliver six and Kristie Mastre four. Hudson was on it again with four aces and combined with DeCreft for 27 assists.
With a 1-1 record, Homer faced up against the Seward Seahawks for the game deciding who would play Grace for the final spot for state. The Mariners lost in three: 14-25, 11-25 and 18-25.
“I think the girls were playing too hard and had a difficult time settling down and allowing themselves to get into a rhythm,” said Trowbridge.
Hutt led once again with seven kills, followed by Basargin’s six. With five aces total, the Seahawks showed great serve defense in their win. Basargin also had a team high five digs and two blocks.
This loss ended the Lady Mariners’ season, and even with many seniors graduating, Trowbridge isn’t too worried about the future of Homer volleyball.
“They have been an amazing group of players to work with this season and I think they have grown a lot as players and as a team. The experiences they had this season will help them be more successful in future sports. Although the seniors are going to leave an enormous hole in the team, the returning players will be strong and solid and will have some good success to build on.”