The Grantsville volleyball team has suffered through injuries and illness at various points this season, making it difficult for first-year coach Trudi Wilson’s Cowboys to get much going in the way of consistency.
However, those struggles won’t keep Grantsville from advancing to the Class 3A state tournament later this month. They punched their ticket to the playoffs with a 25-8, 25-13, 25-18 win over Summit Academy on Tuesday, locking them into fourth place in Region 13.
“It’s a huge win,” Wilson said. “(Tuesday), for the most part, we were here and ready to play. We looked good.”
The outcome of Tuesday’s match never was in doubt for the Cowboys (8-16, 2-5 Region 13), who thoroughly dominated the first two sets. Summit Academy (0-11, 0-6) pushed Grantsville a bit in the third set, taking a 14-10 lead, but the Cowboys responded with a 13-1 run to regain the upper hand.
Ashton Ekins led the Cowboys with seven kills. Paige McCluskey had 12 assists and five aces, and Taylor Berrett added 13 digs.
“It’s been hit and miss,” Wilson said of her team’s struggles this season. “I’m still waiting for my full team to come and play. This kind of gives us an idea of what it is, but we’ve had a lot of injuries and sickness — I can not tell you how many girls have been out on the court and have had to come out because they’ve had to come out because they’re ready to throw up. We’ve played with everybody really well, but we haven’t had everybody playing their very best.”
Even though the Cowboys are assured of entering the state tournament as Region 13’s No. 4 seed, Grantsville still has one regular-season match left — Thursday evening’s match against Judge Memorial at home, which will serve as Grantsville’s Senior Night celebration. The Cowboys are looking to avenge a tough loss to the Bulldogs in their first meeting earlier this season in Judge’s cramped home gym in Salt Lake City.
“I would love for the seniors to come out with a win against Judge,” Wilson said. “We played them really well at their place. They have a really low ceiling (in their gym), and we’ll be on our court this time. We were missing a couple middle (blockers) last time. One was injured and the other one had to come out sick, so I’m looking forward to Judge.”