The Hinton volleyball team solidified their second consecutive state tournament appearance on Wednesday night.
The Blackhawks swept Rock Valley to win their regional final and get to state for the fourth time in program history.
Senior middle hitter Avery Burgad scored the winning point with her kill. She says she is proud of how far the program has come with her senior class.
Co-Head Coach Robin Mohr says the ability to go to state again is a testament to the amount of work put in this season.
The Hinton defense came to play in a big way recording 51 digs, 12 blocks, and not allowing Rock Valley to record an ace serve. Coach Mohr says Hinton’s defense sets up its offense very well.
That offense is run by setter Ashlyn Kovarna who recorded 31 assists and five kills in the win. She is quick to give credit to her teammates who make her job easy.
Coach Mohr says Kovarna has all the trust from her teammates whether she is setting them up or bailing them out with a quick kill on an overpass.
The Hinton offense hit .391 with just eight attacking errors on 42 kills in the contest. Five Blackhawks recorded four-or-more kills while Gabbie Friessen and Bailey Boeve each had double-digit kills. Kovarna says having so many options is a luxury as a setter.
Hinton’s front-row defense recorded 12 blocks making things incredibly difficult for Rocket hitters. Coach Mohr says they have put an emphasis into blocking, and it is paying off.
Hinton’s roster is made up of eight seniors making this a very experienced group. It is a fun group that Burgad says is excited to have one more ride with each other after playing with each other for so long.
Now that the Blackhawks are back at state, they are hungry. Hinton lost in the state semifinals last year keeping them from getting a taste at the ultimate prize. Kovarna says they know it is time to get to work, so their season does not end short of the title match again.
Burgad says nothing else will suffice if Hinton can not get to the state championship match.
There is a strong possibility that the championship match could feature Hinton and Dike-New Hartford who are the two top teams in Class 2A. Coach Mohr says the girls are definitely motivated to get back at the Wolverines who ended their season last year, but he says there is work to be done before they can worry about that.
Hinton will start their state tournament run on Tuesday, October 31 at 2:25 PM. The Blackhawks are the second seed and will take on the seven-seed Aplington-Parkersburg in the quarterfinal round. KLEM Radio will provide live broadcasts of every Hinton state tournament match from Xtream Arena in Coralville.