Oct 30, 2013 - By Bruce Tippets, Sports EditorWright is the opening-round draw for the Shoshoni Wranglers at the Class 2-A state volleyball tournament in Casper.
Match time for the contest is 5 p.m. Thursday at the Casper Events Center.
Wright enters the state tournament as the No. 2 seed from the East.
Shoshoni is the No. 3 seed from the West.
Wright lost to Big Horn in the Class 2-A East regional championship match in five sets last week.
Wright has ben a dominant team the entire season so we are going to have to step up our game," SHS coach Christina Mills said.
SHS beat Wright during the first tournament of the season.
"They are a different team now, but so are we," Mills said. "The girls are excited about the possibilities. It will come down to how well we play as a team in that atmosphere."
Shoshoni comes into the match as the smaller of the two teams.
"Wright has the height on their side," Mills said. "They have two powerful middle that both hit and block well."
Mills said Shoshoni can't avoid to fall behind early to Wright.
"We are going to have to come out and play great defense from the beginning," Mills said. "We have to get their hitters frustrated so they make key errors."
Wright has a veteran team for the 2013 season.
"Many of their players played at the state tournament last year, so that may be an advantage," Mills said. "However, we have nothing to lose. These girls are determined to play tough."
Shoshoni's roster one senior, Erika Eckley.
The juniors are Annika Dechert, Tasha Maddock, Raine Pingetzer and Zareesha Mills..
The sophomores are Audrya Tarango, Taylor Robinett and Raimee Dempster.
The three freshmen are Taylor Vassalluzzo, Tammy Maddock and Rachel Goff.
"We were so excited to make it to the state tournament this season," Mills said. "After losing a large group of seniors last year and having a young team this year, making it to state was one of our main goals."
The Wranglers punched their ticket with a four-set victory over Thermopolis in the consolation round.
"These young ladies will not give up no matter what," Mills said. "They left it all on the floor this last weekend. I was so proud of theme and their overall effort. They are committed to playing as a team and it truly shows on the court."
The other two regional tournament wins for Shoshoni came over Greybull and Wind River.
"We played consistently through all of our matches," Mills said. "We had only a few moments where we made too many unforced errors and lost key games."
The moment the girls switched sides, they played to win and won key matches."
The cross-county Wind River/Shoshoni battle was for third in regionals.
Shoshoni outlasted Wind River 25-17, 25-20, 15-25, 22-25, 15-13.
In the fifth set vs. Wind River, Shoshoni was down 11-6.
"However, the girls took control from the serving line and made some key kills that enabled us to pull out a win," Mills said.
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