By Tiffany L. Rehbein
The Havre Blue Pony junior varsity volleyball team defeated Browning and Anaconda, but fell to Butte Central at the Browning Triangular last weekend.
"We are finally playing consistent volleyball which has built some self-esteem and confidence in the girls," said Heather Smith, junior varsity coach.
The JV team is currently 5-7, excluding tournament play.
"In all but two of those games, we should have won, so our record, in all actuality, could be 10-2," Smith said.
With four matches remaining, all at Havre, the Blue Ponies will look to knock off Chinook, Chester, and Browning and Lewistown at a triangular later this month.
"Our goal is to finish the season playing consistent and working as hard as we can the whole game," Smith said. "We want no letdowns during the match."
The junior varsity boasts two freshmen, Sara Suek and Jeanna McPherson.
"There is a big change coming to the JV team from eighth-grade volleyball," the freshmen said. "It's almost like a whole different game."
The sophomores on the team are Julie Wagner, Laura Hedstrom, Katie Miller, Jamie Brandon, Alysia Kato and Jessica McIntosh.
"This year we've kind of felt like the peanut butter between the two slices of bread," the sophomores said. "From our point of view, we have people to look up to and learn from and also people to teach. We've all improved quite a bit from the beginning of the season and the friends we've made throughout this season are friends that will last a lifetime."
Natalie Harada, Sam Velk, and Stacey Siebrasse are the juniors who highlight the squad.
"As juniors, we've had our share of ups and down," the juniors said. "It's been frustrating, but we've learned that by working as a team, we can achieve a lot. Personally, we've found that the friendships we've formed throughout this season have meant the most to us, no matter if we win or lose."
The junior varsity will face the Sugarbeeters at 5:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Havre High School gymnasium.
"I'm extremely proud of these girls on how hard they have worked to overcome our shaky start of our volleyball season," Smith said. "They are determined to finish the season with consistent, hard-fought wins."