Cats banking on tourney run
The De Soto High School volleyball team had a rough four days, coming in last place at the Frontier League tournament on Saturday, then dropping three games in a quadrangular against Santa Fe Trails, Eudora and Gardner. The eight losses caused their record to fall to 5-27.
They came into the Frontier League tournament as the seventh seed, and opened play against second-seeded Eudora, the eventual tournament champion who defeated them 25-18 and 25-8.
"We're familiar with Eudora's game, because we've seen them I think four times now, and we just need to get over the mental block," De Soto coach Jenny Barnhart said.
The Wildcats then played the third-seeded Ottawa, losing by scores of 25-14 and 25-13, followed up by losses of 25-12 and 26-24 to sixth-seeded Louisburg.
In the consolation bracket of the tournament, took both matches to three games but couldn't pick up a win, losing to fifth-seeded Spring Hill 25-17, 22-25 and 25-17 and eighth-seeded Baldwin 22-25, 25-16 and 25-23.
"We have a lot of injuries and that's unfortunate for us," Barnhart said. "It's really hurt us offensively."
At Tuesday's quadrangular in Gardner, the Wildcats fell to Santa Fe Trails by a score of 25-10 in both games, then faced Eudora again, who beat them 25-13 and 25-10.
Through it all, the Wildcats never quit, Barnhart said, and that'll be important as the team prepares for the postseason.
"We're digging better than we have all season long and our defense has been good, but we just haven't been able to put it away on offense," Barnhart said.
In their final match against Gardner, they were down by as many as five and battled back to take the lead late in the game on the strength of Carlie Burnett's serves.
Unfortunately for the Cats, they ended up losing the game 25-19 and then lost their final game of the night 25-13.
It's been an up and down season, but the Wildcats have one more opportunity to leave it on a positive note.
The Cats will play Saturday in the sub-state tournament at St. James Academy.
"I told the girls 'The regular season doesn't matter. We're 0-0 now, and sub-state is the only day that matters now,'" Barnhart said.