STHS fifth in state volleyball |

STHS fifth in state volleyball

Michael Traum

LAS VEGAS – What could have been. That’s what the South Tahoe High volleyball team is thinking following two straight losses and elimination from the NIAA/U.S. Bank State Tournament.

The Vikings lost, 15-4, 8-15, 15-6, to eventual champs Durango and were knocked out by Green Valley, 15-9, 15-6, in Friday’s second round at Green Valley High School. Tahoe, in its first state trip in six years, earned the match against Durango by beating Bishop Gorman, 15-10, 15-9, on Thursday. The Vikes finished fifth overall.

“In the end, a little bit of inexperience on the outside hitting hurt us,” said Tahoe coach Alan Lambert. “It was a bittersweet because we were hoping to do better. The surroundings were tough, the crowd was really loud and the South teams are tough. But I thought the girls played really well and it was a great experience.”

Junior Adrian Hankoff led the Vikes in both matches, finishing with 23 kills and nine blocks total. Senior Kate Devore has six kills and four blocks, while sophomore Courtney Wilson had four kills and sophomore Chantelle Young tallied two kills and two blocks.

Hankoff, who was named Northern Nevada Player of the Year prior to the tournament, said she thought the state effort, including her own, could’ve been more focused.

“We were looking too much at the next game instead of focusing on the game we were in. We lost to Durango because we weren’t all there playing like we should play at state. With the athletes we have, we matched up well with every other team. They were nothing special,” she said. “I put a lot of the blame on myself. I would expect a player of the year to lead a team more than I did. I just didn’t perform that well. But I know we’re really looking forward to next year. We lose a couple of seniors (Devore and Maren Taylor), which will hurt, but we’ve got a chance to do really well.”

Added Lambert, “Even one more match would’ve been a high meeting of our goals. But fifth place is a good achievement. I think the girls had a great time, learned a lot and our looking forward to next year.”

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