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Ponies play strong on opening weekend

Havre netters battle tough foes as the host of the Eastern A Tip-Off


August 27, 2018

Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

Havre High's Jessa Chvilicek and Sam Oliver, right, go for a block during an Eastern A Tip-Off volleyball match between the Blue Ponies and Miles City Friday afternoon at the HHS gymnasium. The Ponies won twice Friday, but fell in their match with the Cowgirls.

The Havre High volleyball team is used to opening the season on the road. However, this year, things were a little different for the Blue Ponies, who hosted the Eastern A Tip-Off Tournament this past weekend at the HHS gymnasium.

The two-day tournament which featured group play Friday and tournament play Saturday, had all 10 Eastern and Central A teams in attendance. Joining HHS was Lewistown, Belgrade and Livingston of the Central A, along with Billings Central, Laurel, Miles City, Glendive, Hardin and Sidney from the Eastern A.

When the two-day tournament was all said and done, the Ponies posted a record of 2-3-1. Havre won two matches Friday, knocking off Lewistown 25-21 and 25-14 in the first match of the season. Also Friday, Havre beat Sidney, 25-17 and 25-11, while also tying Glendive 21-25 and 25-23. In the other match for Havre Friday, the Ponies were swept by Miles City, which defeated HHS 25-19 and 25-18.

"I was really happy with how the girls came out and played Friday," HHS head coach Tamecia Jarvis said. "We played well and we played together. We finished. We had a couple matches where we were down and we came back to win, so on Friday, I thought we did a great job."

After a solid finish during the first day of pool play, Havre ran into Billings Central in the first round of the tournament Saturday morning and the Rams took care of business pretty easily in both matches, winning each 25-17. The Ponies then took on Lewistown in a rematch from Friday and despite grabbing an 11-7 lead in the first set, Havre dropped the opening game 25-21 and never really recovered. Lewistown closed out the match with a 25-17 win, which ended the weekend for HHS.

"I think we just got a little intimidated by Billings Central," Jarvis said. "And we played them pretty close; I think it's just a matter of us getting out of our heads and sticking together out there."

Havre Daily News/Colin Thompson

Havre's Caitlin Terry makes a dig during Friday's match with Miles City at the HHS gymnasium.

While the Ponies didn't finish the way they wanted, Jarvis said it was a solid start to the season, and over the two days, HHS had some standout performances from the likes of Cassidy Acor and Jessa Chvilicek, who had 34 and 30 kills respectively over the two days of competition. Sam Oliver also had a solid weekend, leading the Ponies in digs with 22.

"I think that our defense wasn't that good," Jarvis said. "Our block was a little inconsistent and so was our hitting, so those are things that we will need to work on. I thought that we got good effort and that's the main thing I am asking for, but we need to try and fix some of those things."

Havre will be back in action Friday, facing Livingston and Belgrade in back-to-back Central A conference matches Friday in Belgrade. The Ponies will then travel to Livingston Saturday to take part in the annual Windy City Classic.


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