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The Student News Site of Gretna East High School

The Wingspan

The Student News Site of Gretna East High School

The Wingspan

Griffins’ State Journey Ends in Quarterfinal Defeat

Attempting+to+block+the+ball%2C+Hayden+Hart+%2811%29+and+Hailey+Levinson+%2811%29+jump+in+front+of+the+net.+The+play+ended+in+a+point+for+the+Badgers.
Madeline Petrick
Attempting to block the ball, Hayden Hart (11) and Hailey Levinson (11) jump in front of the net. The play ended in a point for the Badgers.

This season for the girl’s varsity volleyball team was an emotional ride for many. With having a 25-11 record, they headed straight into the Class B State Volleyball Championship. The Griffins fought, but ended up losing in three sets to the Bennington Badgers on Nov 1.

Despite major plays from junior outside hitter Hayden Hart, junior middle hitter Hailey Levinson and junior libero Maggie Williams; the first two sets ended with a final score of 25-18, giving the Badgers a head start on the game. The Griffins were five points ahead of the Badgers in set three, but gave up the lead, ultimately resulting in a 25-22 loss. The Badgers moved on to play Norris in the semi-final and lost 3-2. The Titans advanced to play Skutt Catholic on Nov. 4, where they met their match and lost all three sets one after another, making the SkyHawks the Class B Champions for the ninth straight year.

While the Griffin’s season ended in tears, the team still had much to be proud of.

“When we started in the spring we made our goal: ‘Let’s go to State.’ I’m very excited for them and what they’ve accomplished,” coach Brandon said. 

Overall, the team worked together and held their own on the court by keeping each set a close game at the State quarterfinals.  The Griffins were ranked number five before the game, but they dropped down to number seven in Class B, just after the game. 

“No one expected us to be as good as we were,” freshman middle hitter Avery Kelsay said. We have no seniors and we’re a first-year school, so I am very proud of our team for getting to where we are. I think it was a really cool experience as a first-year school making State because not a lot of teams get that experience.” 

Walking off the court, Brandon already had his mind focused on next year. 

“It’s nice to get the experience here, and hopefully, it lights a fire for next season and we can make a little more noise down here,” he said.

The girls, feeling that fire, also have their eyes set on going further at State next season. To do this, some girls have joined club teams and will continue playing throughout the off-season.  Others plan to continue to train and run drills to improve, which is something Brandon says they need.

“We’re looking for growth from all the players,” Brandon said. “Everybody needs to get a little bit better in the off-season, and if we do, I think we have the potential to make some noise down here next year.”

Although the team didn’t make it as far as they hoped this season, they are grateful for the relationships they built and are looking forward to next season. 

“I think this experience just brought the team closer together,” sophomore outside hitter Kendra Gross said. “Next year we’re just going to come out stronger than we did this year and play our hearts out.” 

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About the Contributors
Reese Beery, Reporter
Reese Beery is a sophomore in her first year on the journalism staff. She serves as a staff reporter. She enjoys many aspects of journalism including sports writing and photography. From capturing memories with a camera to halftime football reports, she gives it her all. She joined the journalism program because of her lifelong passion for writing and creativity. If she’s not working you can find her spending time with family, friends or attending sporting events, even if it’s just her little brother’s baseball games.
Madeline Petrick, Editor-in-chief
Madeline Petrick, otherwise known as Madie, is a sophomore at GEHS. She was on the Gretna Media staff at Gretna High last year. This year she is the GEHS Wingspan's Editor-in-chief. Madie has wanted to be a journalist since she was in fourth grade. She loves finding stories to tell and sharing her creativity with the world. As a freshman, Madie won first place for entertainment review writing at the NSAA High School State Journalism championships for Class A. Outside of the journalism world, she devotes her time to writing, swimming and being involved at school. She has swam competitively for the past nine years and continues to swim for the Gretna Swim team which is the joined swim team of GEHS and GHS. Along with journalism and swimming, Madie is a member of the Student Council. She also enjoys spending time with her friends, her dogs and blasting music, mostly Taylor Swift.  This year she won a Best of SNO award for her story "Gretna family, non-profit, inspired by personal experience, create beacon of hope."  
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