With last year’s champ in 5A, the 4A volleyball tournament is a wide-open race


If any classification is a wide-open race, it’s 4A.

That’s because last year’s 4A champion was Bountiful, and the Braves moved to 5A.

“It’s going to be a fun one,” said Spanish Fork head coach Danee Merrell. “I’m excited, and I know my girls are excited. …I think they’ll be good games.”

Sky View enters the 4A state volleyball tournament the No. 1 ranked team, but the Bobcats are far from Goliath. The Bobcats will face Uintah in the first round, while second-ranked Park City opens with Pine View.

The Bobcats are led by junior outside Dawson Day, senior middle hitter Morgan Penrose, and senior setter Mikaela Sorensen.

Both Sky View and Park City won their region championships without a region loss, while Region 9 champ Desert Hills earned the title with just one loss.

Spanish Fork and Lehi were co-region champs with Spanish Fork winning the coin toss for the No. 1 seed.

Merrell said the Dons haven’t entered the tournament a No. 1 seed since 2010. She said she’s trying to prepare her team for the high-pressure, chaotic environment of the tournament with the same message.

“We tell them we’ve got to focus, and we’ve got to prepare,” said Merrell, who graduated from Spanish Fork in 2010 after helping the team to a third-place finish as a senior in the fall of 2009. “Every game is like war, and we’ve got to want it.”

She said the team has five seniors who provide strong leadership. They also have the advantage of learning from a trio of softball players, who learned how to compete in that state tournament environment in last year’s championship run.

Mallory Barber, Marae Condie, and Samantha Cowden have tried to help their teammates prepare by sharing their experiences on last year’s state championship softball team.

“They know that feeling and they can bring that sense of …read more

Source:: Deseret News – Sports News

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