By Jason Shoot
The premier volleyball players from three high school classifications will converge on Havre this weekend for the ABC All-Star High School Volleyball Tournament at Northern Gym on Friday.
The top senior players from Class A, Class B and Class C teams will square off against each other in matches pitting class against class.
Each team will be guided by three state champion coaches Class A's Jackie Fuller of Whitefish, Class B's Laurie Kelly of Roundup, and Class C's Carla Schwend of Harlowton.
Class A and Class C will open the tournament at 2:30 p.m. Class B and Class C will follow at 4:30 p.m., and Class A and Class B will close out the tournament with a match at 6:30 p.m.
This year's tournament will consist of a best-of-5 format in each match.
Area residents should be familiar with several members of the Class A team, which includes three players from Belgrade and two more from Fergus. Those two teams finished first and second, respectively, at the Central A district tournament at the Havre High gym four weeks ago.
Belgrade, this year's state runner-up, is represented by 5-foot-10 outside hitter Rosie Meyn, 5-7 setter Carly Pickthorn and 5-9 middle hitter Sage Debois.
Meyn has signed to play volleyball at Carroll College beginning next season.
Belgrade's head coach, Dawna DeMaere, will join Fuller on the sidelines helping instruct the Class A team.
The Panthers join Class C's Stanford as the only three schools to have three representatives in this tournament.
Fergus is led by a pair of outside hitters Lindsay Garcia, the Central A's top kill-getter this past season, and Ammie Smith.
Class B is led by Montana Gatorade Player of the Year Kamber Kelly, an exceptional player with all-around skills worthy of a NCAA Division I scholarship. Instead, Kelly decided to stay close to home and signed a letter of intent to play for MSU-Bozeman.
Malta's Juliann Keller, a 6-foot middle hitter, will also compete on the Class B squad.
Additional players to have officially signed to play volleyball in college next year include Garcia (MSU-Northern or Sheraton College), Kelly, Roundup's Cortney Metzler (University of Great Falls), Harlowton's Mariah Albers (Rocky Mountain College) and Lincoln's Sarah Smith (MSU-Bozeman).
Stanford's Jacklynn Oliver will play basketball at North Dakota State University, Absarokee's Kristen Kynast will attend the University of Mary to compete in track, and Ali Kronebusch of Conrad will attend Northern Arizona University to compete in swimming.