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Wolfpack claws way to top of conference

By Vince Bagby, Sports Director, vbagby@keci.com
Published On: Oct 09 2013 04:58:39 PM MDT
MISSOULA, Mont. -

Last year the Kalispell Glacier volleyball team won a game at the state tournament for just the second time in program history, however winning just one game at state was not enough for this group and the returning players say that experience has been a motivating factor to go further this fall.

"Now we want to compete at that next level and keep going and keep winning,” explains senior captain Hannah Atlee. “We want to bring home some hardware."

"It kind of insured the fact that we can make it to state and we can win,” says junior outside hitter Tessa Krueger. “And then this year we're just going after it and doing everything we can to get there and win."

"They had high goals last year at the state tournament and just getting there wasn't where they wanted to be,” said Wolfpack head coach Christy Harkins. “So it has motivated them a lot to work hard every single day and be ready for the competition as it comes."

This Wolfpack team has definitely been ready for their opponents so far this season.  Glacier is off to a 12-2 record with a perfect conference mark of 6-0 heading into the second half of league play.

"It gives us confidence but we know that just because we beat somebody the first time doesn't mean we're going to beat them again,” says senior captain Cassi Hashley.  “So we need to have that confidence and determination to do that in the second half."

"You know it should give us a lot of confidence but it should also give is a lot of warning that everyone is coming after us now ready to take it back from us," says coach Harkins.

"We're very confident, not so much arrogant but we know we are the best and we can get it done when it needs to get done," added Krueger.

The team admits some of their success is in their size with five different players measuring at least 6-feet tall.  They say the rest of their strength lies within their team unity.

"We're a big team for sure so that help to have a big front row and then our back row contributes just as much,” says Hashley.  “Our team has such good chemistry and I think that really, truthfully helps on the court."

"I think everyone has helped play a role as a leader on the team and so it hasn't been that much of a change, everyone want to be that leader and that's how good it is this year," adds Atlee.

"One thing I enjoy the most is we know when someone is down or someone hits a couple balls out, we know how to get them fueled up again and get them going and get the intensity up,” says Krueger.  “That's what I love about this team; we're never going to be down."

"This is a great group of kids; they are just fabulous people as well as good athletes.  They're good friends and they get along,” says Harkins.  “It's a lot of fun to be with these guys every day at practice and see the potential they have because of how well they get along."