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PCHS Girls Volleyball Wins First Playoff Round

Ryan Kostecka

Park City girls volleyball head coach Matt Carlson knew the state playoffs weren’t going to be easy. Regardless of who the Miners were playing, Carlson spent the last week telling his team that the postseason was a totally different beast and his girls better be ready.

“We’ve been here before and honestly, it doesn’t matter what you did in the regular season because the playoffs are totally different,” Carlson said. “I told the girls they better be ready... We did everything we could to get ready so now all we had to do was go out and play.”

So, when the No. 6 Miners found themselves trailing No. 27 Alta midway through the first set on Tuesday, Carlson elected to not call a timeout and let his girls fight their way through it. Turns out that was the right call as Park City came back to not only win the set, but ultimately sweep Alta 3-0 (25-22, 25-18, 25-15) in the open

“We have a very veteran squad and we (coaches) trust whoever is on the court,” Carlson said. “Without a doubt we had some nerves hit us in the first set, and that’s even what the girls said after the match. But then we battled and worked through it. I’m proud of us for getting our first taste of the playoffs and fighting through.”

The Miners came out sloppy in the first set, especially against an Alta squad who entered the match just 2-18. Credit to the Hawks who had nothing to lose and played like it, and when combined with Park City’s nerves, it’s no wonder that the Miners found themselves trailing.

But the play of setter Sydney Ormiston, middle Hayden Goodman and outside hitter Brookelynn Sapp seemed to settle the Miners down and led to the come-from-behind win.

“We all know what’s at stake and we definitely had a little bit of nerves to start with,” Ormiston said postgame. “Once we settled down though, we really played a lot better and showed what we can do. That was fun and we can’t way to do it again tomorrow night.”

After winning that first set, Park City seemed to settle down and jumped out to big leads in the second and third sets. This allowed Carlson to play a lot of his seniors and really spread the wealth around.

Park City returns to action on Wednesday night in the second round when it hosts No. 11 Mountain Ridge. The Sentinels took down No. 22 Murray 3-1 (25-15, 25-22, 19-25, 25-11) on Tuesday night.

The second round will bring a whole other set of problems for the Miners as not only will they be facing a good Mountain Ridge squad, they must focus on the Sentinels and not look ahead as to who may be waiting in the quarterfinals; No. 3 Salem Hills.

The Miners and Skyhawks were the top two teams in Region 8. And although Park City won both matches this season, Salem Hills still got the higher seed in the playoffs.

But thinking about that match can wait according to Carlson. All the focus is on Mountain Ridge so much that immediately after their first-round victory, the Miners got together in the high school auditorium to watch game film of Mountain Ridge.

“We all know what our ultimate goal is. … We all know who we could possibly be playing on Thursday night in the quarterfinals,” Carlson said. “But if we don’t take care of business against Mountain Ridge, Thursday night and Salem Hills, if that’s who makes it, won’t matter to us.”

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