By Tiffany L. Rehbein
With the Central A divisional tournament just two weeks away, the Havre Blue Pony seniors and their parents will be honored prior to the match against Lewistown on Saturday.
With a senior-laden roster, many things will be missed.
"They are really a super bunch of girls," Havre head coach Bill Huebsch said. "We have been together about six years since about seventh grade, going to Big Sky State Games and such. It's always hard to see seniors go, but these guys were a pretty darn good bunch of kids. They are all great students and good friends."
The uniqueness of this class includes being members of back-to-back State Class A championship teams, and being part of two volleyball teams who boasted two of the best season records in the history of the school in 1997 and 1998.
Teri Sherrill is a defensive specialist for the Ponies.
"She has been a real spark plug off the bench," Huebsch said. "She comes in and plays really good defense. I have seen her improve so much over the years, even this year I have seen her really become a good volleyball player."
Terra Olson has come off the bench of late and played well in the back row.
"She has worked hard to get to where she is," Huebsch said. "She has been coming in for us and she is getting more and more comfortable each time she is out there."
Jana McPherson is a well-rounded player who plays all over the floor.
"This is a girl that could probably play any position I would ask," Huebsch said. "She is very versatile. She has a good understanding of the game. She is a leader both on and off the court."
Kirsten Kuka is a setter for the Ponies who has been fine tuning her setting game throughout her high school career.
"She has worked really hard at improving her setting skills and she has gotten much more consistent," Huebsch said. "She really works her tail off to get us the ball."
Lisa Wagner shares the setting responsibilities with Kuka.
"They (Kuka and Wagner) have different styles, different hands, and different releases," Huebsch said. "Both have a real desire for perfection and giving us perfection."
Wagner is also a solid server for the Ponies, having gone 260-265 from the service line this season.
Tiffany Shrauger is one of the strongest defensive players this season for Havre. She also hits outside in the front row.
"She is probably playing as good of volleyball as she has in her entire career," Huebsch said. "She is an obvious threat when she gets near the ball. She is rock solid on serve receive. It is refreshing to know that, on serve receive, you know there is a 90 percent chance that ball will be a plus ball. It is quite a feeling to know you've got a girl out there like that."
Shrauger is one of the top players defensively in the division. She can also serve the ball extremely well and is one of the leaders in aces in the league.
"In the front row, she is really getting stronger and really uses her head," Huebsch said.
Erin Patera is a returning All-State player from last year's state championship team.
"Erin is probably one of the best volleyball players I have had the privilege of coaching," Huebsch said. "Erin can do it all if you asked her to do it. She has a great love of the game and really enjoys the game when she is out there."
Patera is ranked in the top 10 in the division in kills, aces, blocks and digs. She is also a threat from the service line for Havre.
"She has got a great court presence," Huebsch said. "The way she goes is how the team goes, her and Tiff (Shrauger) both. We need their leadership."
The junior varsity Ponies will start the day at 10 a.m. on Saturday against Browning with subsequent matches to follow.
The parents will be honored prior to the Lewistown match, at approximately 2:30 p.m.
"All of them are going to be tough to replace," Huebsch said.