EHS places fourth at Du Quoin Tournament
By Doug Daniels
1351sports.com / elveradosports.com
September 7, 2019
(Du Quoin, Ill.) - The Lady Falcons finished last weekend’s Du Quoin Tournament with a pair of wins and three losses, but competed with bigger schools and were able to fight their way into the championship bracket.
The day started with a loss to the tournament host Lady Indians, 25-14, 25-15. Stat leaders for the match were Kaity Lewis with 2 kills, Morgan Bernardini with 5 digs, Emma Yates with 3 assists, and Emma Funk with 3 blocks.
“We did not play very well - mentally,” said Elverado head coach Donette Wheatley. “Every time we play Du Quoin, we are not mentally prepared. They are a very good team and we have to be on our very best game to compete with them.”
EHS bounced back in their next match, a 25-18, 25-18 victory over Christopher. Reese Funk topped kills for Elverado with 6, E. Funk had 7 digs and 4 blocks, and Yates dished out 8 assists.
“We played better this match, played much more offense,” Wheatley said. “We are still giving away too many points - misses serves, free balls out of bounds - but we played much better.”
Elverado then knocked off Wayne City 25-11, 26-24 to earn their spot in the final four championship bracket later in the afternoon with a 2-1 mark in pool play. Lewis had a team-high 7 kills, Hayli Havens finished with 9 digs, and Bernardini and Yates each had 5 assists.
“We came out ready to play the first set, but then made too many mistakes in the second,” said Wheatley. “We played great defense in the second set, digging a lot of their hard spikes and turning it into offense.”
In the tournament semifinals, Herrin edged the Lady Falcons 25-22, 25-22. E. Funk and Havens both had 5 kills for EHS, E. Funk also had 8 digs and 4 blocks. Yates led assists with 8.
“We played really well against a 3A school,” said Wheatley. “It’s the little mistakes that shot us in the foot this match. I was very proud of the way we played. Playing these bigger schools in this tournament makes us better.”
In the third place game, Okawville slipped past EHS in three sets, 25-23, 20-25, 17-15. E. Funk had double dig kills with 11, and Bernardini had double digit digs with 10. Yates led assists with 13, E. Funk again led blocks with 4.
“Even though we went 2-3 in the tournament, we played some great volleyball against some good teams,” Wheatley said. “Being the smallest school there and finishing fourth out of eight says a lot for our kids. I’m super proud of them. We missed too many serves and very crucial times in the Okawville match. Hopefully we can learn from it.”
Elverado’s varsity record is 5-5 overall following the tournament.
Photos by Doug Daniels / ElveradoSports.com