Gering volleyball team places 4th in GNAC Tournament

Gering’s Emily Harrison gets ready to hit the ball during Saturday’s match against Scottsbluff in the GNAC Tournament at SHS.

The Gering High School varsity volleyball team recorded a fourth-place finish in the GNAC Tournament on Saturday at Scottsbluff High School.

The Bulldogs opened the event with a 25-17, 25-18 win over Scottsbluff, and then in its other pool-play match, Gering lost to eventual tournament champion Columbus 25-13, 25-14, sending the Bulldogs into the third-place match against North Platte. Gering lost to North Platte 25-19, 25-19.

“Overall, I think we had moments of good play, and we also had moments of not-so-good play,” Gering head coach Amanda Cochran said. “So, we’re still looking for consistency.”

Gering’s best match of the day came against Scottsbluff. Cochran said several players made key contributions off the bench. The victory improved the Bulldogs’ season record against the Bearcats to 6-0.

“It’s hard when you play a team three times, let alone six times in a season,” Cochran said. “I think Scottsbluff has improved a lot throughout the season. They’ve done a lot of work in their gym, too. It was a fun game today. Our girls were definitely focused, though, and played hard.”

Gering had a more difficult time against Columbus and North Platte.

“We played Columbus, which went on to win the tournament. That was a great match for us and definitely tested us. In the last game we played North Platte, and we didn’t rise to the occasion like I was hoping we would.”

Cochran said several of her players performed well during the tournament.

“I thought Macey Boggs worked really hard today. Every ball she could get to she was there, and I thought Olivia Schaub really hit well at the net,” Cochran said. “We had good effort in our back row, too.”

Against Scottsbluff, Schaub put down seven kills and had 13 digs. Elli Winkler tallied seven kills, and Jenna Balthazor had six kills and two ace serves. Zoee Smith finished with 14 digs, and Kennie McFarland had eight digs.

In the North Platte match, Schaub collected 10 kills, and Smith had 12 digs. Against Columbus, Balthazor had four kills, Winkler had three kills, Jasmine Johnson had two kills, Smith finished with nine digs, and Boggs had one ace serve.

Gering, which is 15-16 on the season, will play at Sidney on Tuesday before hosting Bridgeport on Thursday.