Coming up short
Dino's perfect run for the state title dashed in championship match
|Traci Mortensen and Morgan Warburton deflect a North Sanpete spike.|
The Dinos beat Ogden in three games. The Dinos also swept Wasatch and sent Delta packing without a win.
In the championship match of the state tournament, Carbon High's volleyball team beat North Sanpete the first two games of the best of five match.
It looked as though Carbon would not only win the state title but would do so with a perfect record.
However, the volleyball tides abruptly turned and washed away Carbon's hopes of returning home as state champions.
In an unbelievable North Sanpete rally, the Lady Hawks won the next three games of the match and sent a tearful Carbon team home as second runner-up for the third consecutive season.
The student, parent and teacher crowd which had gathered to cheer on the Lady Dinos sat in amazement, trying to absorb the change of events.
It had been a typical, strong Carbon match.
Pollastro shined as always with her quick-set spikes and blocks which denied the opposition before they could fully rise to the net.
Warburton regularly confused the adversary with sneak tips and overwhelmed onlookers with her amazing hang-time and ability to spike the ball straight down.
Randi-lyn Bean had her same sprawling digs and Brittani Bentley's destructive spikes still seemed to graze the line of the opponents' court every time.
Traci Mortensen's steadiness and experience guided the team out of trouble spots.
Monica Shorts filled her leadership position as setter and overseer of the court.
Cora Broadbear's versatile play allowed her to fill many needed roles.
Brooke Herrick maintained the consistency and fluidness that has been her style all year.
Jamie King blocked and spiked with the same intensity she has shown all season.
Carbon's bench offered its same enthusiasm and support and coaches Bruce Bean, Lane Herrick and Cami Carlson guided their team, but more importantly, let the athletes play.
It was not a lack of effort or talent that prevented the Lady Dinos from bringing home the state title.
According to coach Herrick, it just came down to which team made the fewest errors.
"Carbon high was one of the most dominating teams in 3A volleyball this year, even without a championship," he stated. "We just didn't play quite consistent enough."
In the third game of the match, the Lady Dinos lead North Sanpete 21-17.
However, the Hawks were miraculously able to stave off elimination, going on an 8-1 run to win 22-25.
The excitement of the win propelled a second wind into the North Sanpete players.
North Sanpete took the next two games 20-25 and 13-15.
Herrick said the difference between winning and losing was most likely service. North Sanpete was able to make serves count a few more times than the Lady Dinos.
"Volleyball is just a momentum game. There is no reason for these girls to hang their heads," he added.
Carbon will lose five of their nine starters to graduation.
Shorts and Warburton will return as seniors next year and Herrick and King will return as juniors.
Bentley, Broadbear, Bean, Mortensen and Pollastro will all graduate in the spring.
"These senior girls have worked really hard and brought a lot of good traditions to the program," Herrick complimented.
So, while several players say goodbye to Carbon volleyball for good, many more will anticipate next year's season with a new hope for the state title; a title that was so nearly their own on Saturday night.