What started as a great week in league play ended with disappointment in tournament play for the Hillsboro High volleyball team.
The Trojans had come off a pair of league victories Tuesday, including a 25-23, 18-25, 25-21 win over Wichita Collegiate that knocked the No. 1 ranked Spartans from the unbeaten ranks on their home floor.
But the Trojans, who entered their annual home tournament Saturday as the second seed with a 23-6 record, came out flat?and paid the price for it, failing to get out of pool play.
Hillsboro did emerge from the tournament with a winning 2-1 record, but came out on the short end of a three-way tie for first in its pool. Only the top two teams advanced to bracket play.
Hillsboro opened with a 24-26, 25-23, 25-9 win over Sterling, lost to Conway Springs 25-18, 25-19, and defeated Minneapolis 25-13, 21-25, 25-17.
The tie-breaker for the three top teams was the won-loss percentage for total games played during their matches. When Hillsboro was extended to three games by seventh-seeded Sterling, the Trojans put themselves at risk.
Hillsboro played eight games during its three matches and went 4-4. Minneapolis won five of seven games to claim the pool title and Conway Springs went 4-2 to be named runner-up.
?The first match shot us in the foot,? coach Sandy Arnold. ?We played ridiculously.
?We were sluggish the whole day,? she added.
Arnold said the big win over Collegiate Tuesday may have contributed to a letdown on Saturday.
?I don?t know if they thought they won the state championship or what,? Arnold said of her team?s big win.
?It?s fine to be excited, because it?s quite an accomplishment. But you have to come back down to reality and understand that the season is not over?and we did not do that as well as we should have.
?On Saturday, we were not ready mentally or emotionally.?
Meanwhile, Marion, who came to the tournament as the No. 4 seed at 22-7, struggled as well in pool play. The Warriors opened with a 25-19, 25-20 loss to Hoisington, then battered winless Chapman, 25-17, 25-20, before losing to the eventual tournament champion Rock Creek, 25-22, 25-15 to finish 1-2.
Rock Creek, the No. 1 seed at 25-5, defeated Hoisington in the finals.
Coming?Hillsboro was scheduled to complete league and regular-season play Tuesday with a pair of matches at Smoky Valley while Marion was to do the same at Wichita Collegiate.
Both teams will compete at sub-state Saturday afternoon at Sedgwick. The field for the single-elimination tournament also includes Southeast of Saline, Halstead, Lyons, Sedgwick, Sterling and Remington.
Seedings and schedules will be announced today (Oct. 21). Check hillsborofreepress.com for details when they become available.