The Tuba Metropolis Woman Warriors received the beginning they needed in a one-set, winner-take-all match to assert the silver championship trophy on Saturday on the Snowflake “Be Like Nat” Invitational.
Tuba Metropolis opened up a 6-0 cushion over the Present Low Woman Cougars and the Woman Warriors prolonged that margin to as a lot as seven factors earlier than Present Low got here storming again.
The Cougars received as shut as 16-14, however Tuba scored 5 straight to regain the momentum earlier than profitable 25-20.
“I feel we lastly figured them out,” Tuba Metropolis coach Brittney Laughter mentioned of Present Low. “We did see them earlier this morning, and so we modified up our hitters for this recreation. We utilized everybody, so it labored out for us.”
Laughter mentioned the staff’s flooring protection was distinctive and which will have pissed off the Present Low squad.
“We performed nice protection,” she mentioned. “We had nice protection, and so they have been protecting for one another.”
Tuba Metropolis exterior hitter Lyrissa George delivered the game-winning kill, getting the ball to bounce off a few Present Low blockers.
“This recreation was very nerve-wracking,” she mentioned. “I knew that I needed to intention for his or her palms as a result of the entire recreation they weren’t actually urgent with their blocks, so I knew I needed to hit (the ball) on prime and I simply hit the ball as onerous as I can.”
Because the silver champion, George mentioned, that is going to assist with confidence for the veteran Tuba Metropolis squad.
“Successful this exhibits what we’re able to,” she mentioned. “It exhibits how a lot we are able to accomplish if we talk as a staff.”
“That is very thrilling,” senior exterior hitter Ellyce Begay chimed in. “Final yr we did get into the gold bracket, however we misplaced out. Despite the fact that we received the silver bracket, I’m simply pleased that we received collectively as a staff. We truly received a plaque, which is sweet.”
Senior libero Alaina Dugi mentioned the silver championship recreation was among the best matches they performed throughout the 16-team, two-day match.
“I’d say our greatest match can be most likely ALA,” Dugi mentioned of the squad from Queen Creek, Arizona. “They’ve some good hitters on that staff.
“Truthfully, it’s most likely simply communication,” the defensive specialist mentioned when requested to elaborate.
“All through the entire recreation we simply communicated,” she mentioned. “I used to be actually amazed in the best way we performed. That match was a variety of enjoyable.”
That match happened in pool play motion as Tuba Metropolis completed third behind ALA-Queen Creek and Winslow. The Warriors did end forward of Chinle.
“We had an awesome recreation with ALA,” the Tuba Metropolis coach mentioned. “We stayed up with them, which was what I used to be on the lookout for. I needed the ladies to see that they are often compete with greater groups like that.”
Laughter mentioned this yr’s squad is made up of 11 seniors. Of these gamers, six are returners from final yr’s squad.
The returnees embrace Asia Sixkiller, Ok’dince Salabye, Ragen Bilagody, George, Begay and Dugi.
“We now have a robust squad however we undoubtedly have room for enhancements,” Laughter mentioned, whereas including that her squad may be very unpredictable.
“I imply, we had some good video games right here after which we had some dangerous video games,” she mentioned. “It’s up and down, however I’m positive with that. I imagine our veterans have a while to step up.
“Not that they haven’t, however I don’t see them struggling,” she added. “They’re carrying the staff and so they’re displaying that by way of their management.”
Laughter mentioned the staff chemistry won’t be a problem as most of her youngsters have performed collectively for fairly a while.
“All people will get alongside effectively,” she mentioned. “It’s serving to us proper now, so I really feel fairly good about that.”
Begay mentioned that chemistry was current in its season opener with Snowflake late final month.
“Once we performed them we simply type of clicked with each other instantly,” she mentioned. “Everybody on this staff has a job on this staff and we’re all working collectively to be the very best we may be.
“The folks on the bench performs a job too,” she added. “They’re cheering for us and that retains us going. It helps us on the courtroom, and it helps us mentally.”
Trying on the 3A North Area, Laughter mentioned the convention race is up for grabs this season. Final season, her squad took second behind a senior-heavy MV squad.
“You realize the area is at all times unpredictable,” she mentioned. “There may be room for enchancment for everyone. I’m not going to single anyone out, however I do really feel like my staff is robust.”
As for postseason aspirations, Begay mentioned your entire squad desires to make a deep run within the 3A state match. And though they don’t have an influence hitter, she mentioned it’s going to take a staff effort.
“I feel our staff is fairly good,” she mentioned. “We’re very aggressive despite the fact that we don’t have like onerous hitters. We now have some that may block and we are able to actually decide up the ball.
“We all know how you can preserve the ball up,” she added.