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Park City set for state tournament

Adia Waldburger, of the Record staff

After a rollercoaster season of big wins and some difficult losses the final regular season game for the Miners volleyball team was a bit anticlimactic as they beat Union in a three-game sweep, 25-11, 25-14, 25-15.

"It was easy," Park City head volleyball coach Ed Potts said. "I was hoping it would be more emotional. It was a little bit disappointing for us, because we wanted to have a big final game."

Potts said that the game was so unevenly matched, that he sat his starters almost immediately. Although, he wanted to give them some playing time before the 3A state volleyball tournament next, he was happy to see that none of his starting lineup was injured in an insignificant game.

"It’s nice we were able to have everyone contribute, but it would have been nice to give the starters play time before State," Potts said.

With more fizzle than fanfare in the last game, the Miners are already looking forward to next weekend. The Miners took third place in Region 10 after Uintah and Waterford tied for first and flipped a coin to determine placement. Third place pits the Miners against Grantsville. Potts says that’s a perfect first-round matchup. Park City beat them earlier in the season on the road in four games. He says that the teams will have improved since that early season meeting, so things should be interesting.

"Obviously they’ve gotten better, but I hope we have as well," Potts said.

One thing they will notice is the position and personnel changes. With the Miners’ six-foot, five-inch Nicole Bishop at the net to block balls and Alex Sheer at the opposite side of the court, Potts hopes to surprise and challenge teams much in the same way as they shocked Uintah, taking the talent-laden team to five games last week with the new positioning.

"That was such an interesting thing, because we made those changes and stayed true to ourselves," Potts said.

The last time the Miners played Grantville, the Cowboys were able to get a lot of hits in, but Potts suspects that just the sheer stature of Bishop will send more of the opponents’ balls to the outside of the court. With the shift of Shearer, he’s hoping his star can get more touches and move the ball around more.

The Miners will meet up with Cowboys at the state tournament, which will be held at Utah Valley State College next weekend. The girls will have had more than a week to rest, but Potts says that’s a good thing.

"If we had to play on Tuesday and turn around and expect them to play really competitive ball at state it would be a problem," Potts said.

He said the key to a big run at state will be capitalizing on the Miners’ depth. With defenses likely keying in on Shearer, he says it will take the whole team to go far into the tournament.

"Were going to need everyone to step up," Potts said. "I think we haven’t had a chance to show our depth. I think we do have weapons."

Potts also noted the play of his junior varsity squad, who went undefeated throughout the preseason and regular season. He said this is the only time in years that he can remember any of the Park City volleyball teams at any level accomplishing such a feat. He said that their dominance is part and parcel to the overall confidence of all of the Park City players this season. Even the sophomore team that didn’t win a game as freshmen last season, won seven games this year.

"Nothing’s changed, personnel-wise," Potts said. "It’s that confidence that you can win games. It’s contagious."

The 3A Utah High School Volleyball Tournament will be held Oct. 26-27 at Utah Valley State College in Orem. The Miners’ game against Grantsville is slated for 8 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 26. Visit http://www.uhsaa.org for the complete schedule.


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