Girls’ Varsity Volleyball makes historic advancement to state

Eva Hadjiyanis, copy editor

For the first time in Edina High School volleyball history, the team is headed to the State Tournament. On Saturday, Nov. 3, the varsity volleyball team beat Robbinsdale Armstrong after five hard-fought sets.

After being seeded first in section 6AA, the team swept both Burnsville and St. Louis Park last week in three sets each. The section final, however, was not as easy of a win. After several serving and hitting errors, Edina lost the first set. Coming back onto the court with a newfound energy, they easily won the second and third sets but gave up the fourth.

In the fifth and final set, Edina won 15-6, sending them on to the state tournament at the Xcel Energy Center. “It was crazy. We have never made it to state, and it is a moment I will never forget. When we won that last point it was incredible,” senior and captain Ella Haugen said.

Only eight teams move on to the State Tournament each year, and Edina will be the only team from the Lake Conference competing. Edina will be playing Lakeville South, who are seeded third in the state, at 11 AM on Thursday, Nov. 8.

Going into the tournament knowing how tough the competition is, the team is excited for the opportunity to continue their season together. “I’m just glad that I have more time with my teammates since it is my senior year and most years our season ends a lot sooner. We are hoping to do some damage, but we are just happy to get to play more,” Haugen said. “All the other teams are phenomenal and we’re proud to be among them whatever happens.”

The team finished the regular season with a record of 16-7. The past few seasons have been leading up to this, as in 2015 their record was 3-19, and they have been improving steadily ever since. “The only real thing that has changed is our coach and our coaching staff. We have always had a very talented team with good volleyball players. Also, we have all played together for so long; all of the pieces have finally clicked,” Haugen said.

All students who want to cheer on the volleyball team on Thursday are excused from school, and bussing will be provided. The parent permission slip is due at 3:30 PM on Wednesday, Nov. 7. The EHS pep-band is planning on attending the game, and the players are hoping to have a large student section to root them on against Lakeville South. “It’s the first time in school history that volleyball has gone to state! It’ll be great to have the support of our friends,” senior Alaina Bohrer said.

No matter what the outcome is, the team is excited about the rare opportunity. “We know it’ll be an incredible experience that we’ll remember forever,” Haugen said.