Warriors look to use home cooking to win zone
The Warrior volleyball team suffered its first and only loss in league on Halloween against Hawthorne.
Now, Whittell has a chance for revenge Saturday when the Serpents come to Stateline for the 2A zone tournament.
“At Hawthorne we didn’t show what we can do,” Carlye “The Magician” Johnson said. “We want to beat them so badly, to give more effort.”
Johnson said the Warriors fell to Hawthorne because of a combination of s a lack of focus and too much candy.
Now, with a league title on the line and a great week of preparation in the books, Whittell is ready to hang a league championship banner on its wall.
“We’re where we need to be right now,” Warrior coach Dan McLaughlin said. “We played our worst game of the year by far and still almost beat them.”
WHS is not taking chances this weekend, hoping to dispatch Hawthorne in the first game of the tournament. The Warriors want to use the home-court advantage to win the zone title and head to state on a roll.
“It’s cool to be at home for once,” senior Shannon McGlothlin said. “In the past we’ve always had to go to Hawthorne.
“We’re more focused at home with all our fans there to cheer us on.”
For the three seniors on the squad, a zone title is not enough. They want to go out as Nevada 2A state champs.
“We want to put the first state banner on the wall in 12 years,” Johnson said.
They have the players to do it. All year, the Warriors have gotten steady play in all phases of the game. McLaughlin said his depth will go a long way to wearing out the other teams in the tournament.
“The two-out-of-three format is perfect for us,” the coach said. “We are so deep that the afternoon games won’t be a problem for us.”
The middle hitters for Whittell are the best in the league, the front line is good at stuffing the opponents’ offense and, of course, there is the Magician to set everyone up.
“We have the best outside hitters, bar none,” McLaughlin said. “The Magician is going to find a team she can run on and work her magic.”
With the phenomenal success the team has experienced, the support for the program in the community has grown immensely.
“This community is excited about the volleyball being played here,” McLaughlin said. “What they’ve seen all season are a group of exciting, athletic players who’ve played with a lot of heart.”
The community will get its chance to watch those players perform on Saturday at 11:15 a.m. in the first game of the tournament. The championship game will be held at approximately 4 p.m., all at Warrior gym in Zephyr Cove.
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