Over the years, the Bertrand Invitational Volleyball Tournament has been host to some of the top class D volleyball match-ups in the state. This year will be no different as the 2019 tournament will showcase 3 top 10 teams in class D. Pleasanton (13-1), currently ranked 2 in class D-1, Bertrand (10-3), ranked 8 in class-D-2, and Giltner (10-2) ranked as high as 7 in class D-2, along with Hitchcock County (10-5), will battle it out on Saturday, September 28 at the Bertrand High School gymnasium.
The Vikings are looking forward to the challenge. “It will be a great opportunity for our girls to compete with the best teams in our class,” commented co-head coach Kevin Lavene. “It will allow us to see exactly how we measure-up.” Both Pleasanton and Giltner are loaded with experience and talent. Pleasanton lost only 2 seniors from a very talented 2018 team, while Giltner is top heavy with senior leadership.
The Vikings will look for consistency and leadership from junior setter Erin Boggs. “Erin is extremely athletic and competitive,” said coach Lisa Mason. “She doesn’t always get statistical credit for all that she is able to do on the court. She is a great setter; she makes a lot of things happen for us.” Boggs is averaging 23 sets per match this season. In addition to Boggs, the Vikings count on their senior libero Jada High for much of the defense and serving success as she leads the team in digs, serve receive, and ace serves. The only other senior on the squad, Jennica Dannehl also provides all around consistency in every aspect of the game.
Junior Aleya Hueftle and Sophomore Johanna Ford have become dominant players at the net for the Vikings, and according to coaches Mason and Lavene continue to get stronger and more dominant through the season. Together, they lead the hitting and blocking categories on the team. Rounding out the Viking line-up include junior Macie Steinbrink and sophomore Jordan Hilmer on the outside. Junior Anna Pelton and freshman Sadie Maloley bring depth to the Vikings off the bench.
The Vikings will take on Giltner at 10:00 am in the East Gym while Pleasanton will match up with Hitchcock County in the West Gym. At 11:00, Bertrand will take on conference rival Hitchcock County in the East Gym, followed up by Pleasanton and Giltner at 12:00. Bertrand and Pleasanton will play at 1:00 in the East Gym while Glitner and Hitchcock County finish up the day in the West Gym.