The Monroe Catholic Rams finished third in the ASAA First National Banks Alaska Class 3A State Volleyball Tournament Saturday at the Curtis Menard Sports Complex in Wasilla.
The Rams opened Saturday’s action in the double-elimination tournament by beating the Skyview Panthers of Soldotna 25-23, 21-25, 25-20, 26-24, the suffered a 25-22, 25-16, 25-18 loss to Grace Christian in the losers’ bracket finals.
“I’m excited about how we finished in the tournament,” said Mike Lessley, who coached his final matches at Monroe Saturday afternoon.
“I’m proud of the girls for the way they fought back after losing the first match of the tournament,” Lessley said.
Marissa King led the Rams against Skyview with 19 kills, while Car’mel Loud had seven and Brittany Johnson six. Delainey Stokes had 17 assists and Andi Clark had 16.
Emily Pfister and Clark had six kills apiece against Grace Christian and King had four. Stokes had eight assists and Clark had five.
“I think we would have had a better chance against Grace Christian if Alyssa Norris would have been able to play,” Lessley said. “It took our middle attack away on three rotations. With Alyssa in there we might have been able to give them a run.”
Norris suffered an injured ankle in Friday’s win against the Valdez Buccaneers.
Mt. Edgecumbe successfully defended its title with a 25-21, 13-25, 25-17, 25-22 win against Grace Christian.
The Rams received several post-tournament awards.
Monroe Catholic received the team sportsmanship award, with Andi Clark and Brittany Johnson earning individual sportsmanship honors.
Emily Pfister earned two match MVP awards and was named to the all-tournament team. Marissa King also earned all-tournament honors and received one game MVP award. Andi Clark earned two game MVP awards and earned the Outstanding Server Award.
In the class 4A tournament Saturday, Palmer defeated Juneau-Douglas 25-13, 24-26, 25-15, 25-20, then lost to Dimond in the losers’ bracket finals 25-13, 25-15, 25-23.
Dimond defeated unbeaten South Anchorage 25-16, 25-20, 25-22, then won the “if” set to 30 points, 30-27, to claim the tournament title.
West Valley was eliminated from the tournament, losing both of its matches.
“We’ve got a young team, so this was a learning experience for us,” said West Valley coach Dave Cox. “Hopefully, we’ve learned some things and see if we can’t get back down here and do better the next couple of years.”