Aug 21, 2013 - By Craig Blumenshine, Staff WriterRiverton High School volleyball players hope the optimism of a new season will trump the bitter memories of last year's Class 4-A West regional tournament losses.
Forty-five athletes hit the courts as practices began Monday in Wolverine Gym in hopes that this year's season will end at the state volleyball tournament in the Casper Events Center.
The Lady Wolverines will host their own Class 4-A West regional tournament.
"We're trying to get a lot of things tested. We're trying to get a baseline of everybody as they are right now with their passing, serving and hitting. We want to figure out what they have done, or haven't done, over the summer," head coach Adrian McNamee said.
The spikers are gearing up for their first competition, the annual McDonald's Volleyball Classic, which had been in Riverton for many years. But this year, the tournament will be played in Cheyenne, beginning an alternating format that will have a primarily class 4-A field back in Riverton next year, according to RHS activities directory Jeremy Hill.
In recent years, Riverton has hosted a largely Class 2-A and Class 3-A field in their first week of competition.
"It will sink in next week that we will take a day to travel to Cheyenne. It puts a bit of a tweak on what we are doing. There is no room to for anybody to miss practice at any level," McNamee said.
McNamee is beginning her sixth season as Riverton's head coach.
"It was fun coming in today. Each season has a different feeling. I'm kind of excited to see what this will shake out to be this year. I know as a team and as a program we are going to have to work extremely hard. We need to outwork everybody else who is across the court," McNamee said.
Riverton will try to regain a state tournament berth competing in the Class 4-A West with Evanston (last year's regional champion), Rock Springs, Green River, Casper Natrona and Casper Kelly Walsh.
Last year, Rock Springs beat Riverton twice at the regional tourney to prevent the Lady Wolverines from making it to the state tournament.
"I'm still bitter about that," RHS head coach Adrian McNamee said.
The Lady Wolverines will get their first shot at revenge against the Lady Tigers in their first home match of the season, set for 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 12, at Wolverine Gym.
RHS volleyball varsity schedule
Aug 30-31, McDonalds Tournament, at Cheyenne
Sept. 5, 5 p.m., at Kelly Walsh
Sept. 6-7, Gillette Tournament, at Gillett
Sept. 12, 6 p.m., home vs. Rock Springs
Sept. 17, 6 p.m., at Green River
Sept. 20, 6 p.m., home vs. Kelly Walsh
Sept. 21, 2 p.m., vs Casper Natrona at NCHS
Sept. 26, 6 p.m., vs. Cheyenne Central at NCHS
Sept. 27-28, Invitational at Kelly Walsh High School
Oct., 3, 6 p.m., home vs. Casper Natrona
Oct. 5, 2 p.m., at Evanston
Oct. 11, 5 p.m., home vs. Green River
Oct. 12, 2 p.m., home vs. Evanston
Oct. 15, 6 p.m., at Lander
Oct. 18, 6 p.m., at Rock Springs
Oct. 25-26, Class 4-A West Regional at Riverton
Oct. 31-Nov. 2, Class 4-A State at Casper Events Center
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