BOWMAN COLUMN: Wando volleyball team successful, busy as playoffs near
The Wando volleyball team had a successful weekend, finishing second in its own tournament behind defending Class AAAA state champ, Hillcrest. The Warriors have a busy week this week with four matches in three days and then it's on to the playoffs next week when they hope to make a deep run.
The Warriors are 16-2 in the regular season and 36-6 overall, including four major tournaments: Dorman, Porter-Gaud, Carolina Forest and the Wando Invitational.
“We did very well,” Wando coach Alexis Glover said. “This year, we don't have the superstar. We don't have a player who will make you say, 'She's phenomenal.' We have nine or 10 players who play well collectively and have success.”
The Warriors topped Aiken at the end of pool play and then edged Bishop England in three games to reach the title match, but Hillcrest was just too much for the Warriors.
Britney Vallez and Natalie Tucker made the first-team all-tournament team while Sophie Gawrych and Mackenzie Lesemann were honorable mention.
“I feel good about this team as we head into the playoffs,” Glover said. “It's a unique blend. We have some seniors who are first-year starters and we have younger kids who are first-year starters. We don't have a lot of players with a lot of experience. The key is to maintain our speed of play, to keep up the pace.”
McKinney ties record
Timberland's Austin McKinney tied a state record on Oct. 4 when he returned an interception for 109 yards and a score in a 33-0 victory over Lake City.
His effort matches the 109-yard interception return by Wando's Cameron Coakley, who went coast-to-coast in a victory over Colleton County in September 2010.
Ken Funnye of Andrews returned a pick 108 yards in 2009. Chris Alston of McBee (1985) and Bernard Brogdon of East Clarendon (1987) both had interception returns that went 105 yards, according to Palmetto's Finest, the High School League's state record book.
The High School League's fall season is winding down, and here are some key dates:
• Girls Class AAA-AA-A state golf championship will be held Oct. 22-23 at the Hackler Course in Conway.
• Class AAAA state championship will be held Oct. 29-30 at the Country Club of Lexington.
• State volleyball tournament will be held Nov. 3 at White Knoll High School.
• State cross country championships will be contested No. 3 at the Sandhills Research Center in Columbia.
• Girls state tennis championships will be held Nov. 3 at the Cayce Tennis Center.
• Division I-A and II-A state football championships will be held Nov. 23 at Benedict College in Columbia.
• Class I-AA and II-AA state football championships will be held Nov. 30 at Benedict College in Columbia.
• Division I-AAAA, II-AAAA and Class AAA state football championships will be held Dec. 1 at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia.
Follow Philip M. Bowman on Twitter: @pandcphil