Annika Hansen (20) leaps high to block a Richfield kill attempt.
For so many years, the Carbon High volleyball team was accustomed to going to the state tournament. But when the team just missed out on clinching a spot in the playoffs last season, it left an impression that lingered all through the offseason.
Missing out on the opportunity of going to state provided a key boost for the team and head coach Danielle Jensen, who along with her assistant coaches Randi Leonard, Tiffany Noyes and Larissa Terry, have worked hard to build the program back up.
Now the Lady Dinos find themselves ready for the spotlight of the state tournament as they open the 3A tournament against Stansbury on Friday, Nov. 1 at 9 a.m. at UVU.
"We're excited about getting the chance to go to state again," said Jensen.
Carbon will head into the tournament with a three-game winning streak after picking up a five set win over Richfield last Thursday at home. While the game was a lot closer than anticipated, Jensen said it was a good reminder for the team not to take things easy.
While the Dinos are ready for the opportunity, the young team with no state tournament experience will have to quickly adjust to the bright lights and the large crowds.
"The atmosphere can be a concern because it's so different than anything they've played in this season," Jensen explained.
Jensen said Stansbury is a team similar to Juab, a Region 12 team Carbon knows well. While Stansbury may not have dominate hitters, they get contributions from a handful of well rounded hitters.
If Carbon wins their first round game, they would face the winner of Morgan/Dixie. If they lose, they would play the loser of the aforementioned game on Friday at Noon.
Whatever the outcome, Jensen said she wants the team to embrace the experience and have fun.
"Anything can happen at the state tournament," said Jensen. "You can't count anyone out."