The Saratoga Sun -

Lady Miners keep on learning

Miners head to Lusk tournament and get a lesson in communication


September 29, 2022

The Hanna, Elk Mountain, Medicine Bow (HEM) High School volleyball team went to the Lusk tournament this past weekend and got an opportunity to play some strong teams. Unfortunately, the Lady Miners had to leave the tournament without any wins.

The first set against the Niobrara County Lady Tigers was close. The Lady Miners kept it close, losing 25-17.

The next set went about the same. The Lady Tigers won 25-14.

Lingle-Ft. Laramie Lady Doggers got ahead of the Lady Miners and didn’t look back in the first where they won 25-7. The next set went better for the Lady Miners, but they still lost to the Lady Doggers 25-10.

Against the Hulett Lady Devils, the Lady Miners played hard and kept the first set competitive, but Hulett prevailed 25-15. The last set had the Lady Doggers win 25-11.

HEM Head Coach Hannah Williams was glad the girls got a chance to play some games after a season that had started with the Lady Miners getting little court time compared to many of the Lady Miners’s opponents.  

“We got to play a lot of volleyball this weekend,” Williams said. “It was great to get this much time playing. Even with this tournament, we have only played nine games where many teams are on their 15th.”

Williams knew some of the teams they faced were going to be a challenge.

“Lingle went through the tournament without losing and they are ranked now, so we knew they were going to be tough,” Williams said. “We also knew Hulett was going to be good and we knew going into the tournament, the teams we were playing were good 1 A teams that are even first or second in their conference.”

Although losses are never welcome, Williams felt there was a lot of good that came from the Lady Miners attending the tournament.

“I don’t think it helped that we had to leave so early to get there and I could probably say we were not really awake in our first game, but we didn’t play badly,” Williams said. “We just missed opportunities I know we are capable of. I look at how we played Hulett later in the day. If we had played like that, I believe we would have beaten Lusk in the morning. I have no doubt.”

Williams was really proud of the freshmen girls who played.

“They got thrown into some games here and there, because we just needed some fresh perspective on the court and some girls needed a bit of a break,” Williams said. “I was able to put them in there and they did well. I really appreciate that they contributed, regardless of how much playing time they got because at the end of the day, what they did give helped us very much.”

Williams said one thing she took away from watching other teams was the strong communication other teams had with each other.

“With Hulett, I noticed the girls and coach never stopped talking,” Williams said. “I think it was a wake up call for our girls because they realized they don’t have to be limited to calling for the ball, but they can constantly be talking and I believe the girls learned from that. I know we have not won games, but the girls have improved so much since we first started, I continue to be proud of them.”

The Lady Miners will be facing Guernsey-Sunrise on September 30 in Guernsey.


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