Lady Pioneers progress at Lincoln tourney
LINCOLN — Gentry’s volleyball team stepped away from conference play to compete in the Spike-Tember Block Party Tournament hosted by Lincoln on Saturday, Sept. 17, and placed second in its bracket.
“We are still learning the game a lot; we’re trying to get more games in, get more reps because our conference is tough and our conference is hard, so we’re trying to go outside [of the league] and still get more reps without playing the same people over and over,” said Gentry coach Delanie Tipton.
The Lady Pioneers brought home a runnerup trophy in the bronze bracket after winning one match in bracket play and losing in the finals of the bronze bracket at Wolfpack Arena. The Lady Pioneers pulled off a tough three-set win over Union Christian, rallying to win the tie-breaker, 15-13, after dropping the second set, 26-24, before losing 25-21 and 25-14 to Providence Academy in the finals of the bronze bracket.
Tipton jumped at a chance to get extra work in without having to travel a long distance. Lincoln is 30 miles away across the county line in Washington County.
“We’re not too far at all. It’s just really nice to come here, and they have a great facility. It was a great tournament. It was put on wonderfully. I’m so glad we got to come,” Tipton said.
Pool play began as early as 8:30 a.m. for some of the 12 teams competing in the tournament. Two gyms were used at Lincoln. One, at the middle school, was used only during pool play, while the other, Wolfpack Arena, the site of bracket play and the championships, was split with two matches occurring simultaneously.
Tipton has been looking for a leader to step up and take charge of a young team competing without any seniors and she felt like the Lady Pioneers progressed as a unit.
“All of them played great, we all grew today, we all learned something new, we all got better. I’m impressed all the way around today,” Tipton said.