Cordova Spikers advance to State

After a season cancelled due to COVID-19, the Cordova Volleyball team is back in the state tournament. From left, Xavier Russin, Maggie Herschleb, Jacey Pallas, Aaliyah Tiedeman, Grace Collins, Alayna Goss, Yag Mejias, Jade Sharky, Amee Hamberger, Anika Jensen, Gwethalyn Jacob, Ricki Reilly and Trevor Dundas. Photo courtesy of Janelle Greenwood

Cordova’s volleyball team is making up for lost time in a big way.

COVID protocols cancelled their schedule last year, and Coach Janelle Greenwood’s squad practiced diligently all season without any travel or matches.

Their efforts paid off, as they placed Second in the Regional Playoffs at Lumen Christi.

In their first day of Regional play on Friday, Nov. 26, Cordova topped Birchwood in 4 games.

Next came a marathon of matches on Saturday, Nov. 27.

The Cordova Spikers faced Su-Valley at 11 am and lost in 3 games. At 1:30 pm, they bounced back to top Unalaska in 3 games, setting up a 4:30 pm rematch battle against Su-Valley for the championship.

This time CHS extended the contest, losing in five games, but qualifying for the eight-team state playoff as Regional Tournament Runner-Up.

“The kids are thrilled to make it to State,” Coach Greenwood said. “In fact, last year they insisted on practicing all the way through the dates of the state tournament, because they felt they would have been there.”

Based on the entire season of play, Gwethalyn Jacob was named All-Conference MVP and Alana Esguerra was named to the All-Conference team. Both Jacob and Esguerra were selected to the All-Tournament team.

Cordova, with an undefeated regular season record of 12-0, received the Conference Championship trophy.

Cordova will face Klawock at 11:45 am on Thursday, March 2, in the first round of the eight-team State 2A championships. The other teams advancing to state are Su-Valley, Chief Ivan Blunka, Dillingham, Wrangell, Chevak and Tri-Valley.