It’s that time of year again.
The Barr-Reeve volleyball team will travel to Loogootee to battle their rival in their annual late season showdown Friday at 7:30 p.m. at Jack Butcher Arena.
The fans of both schools look forward to this match all year as a precursor to their possible sectional meeting.
The two elite volleyball programs hold a combined 30 sectional championships, starting in 1994.
With all the excitement surrounding the match, Vikings’ head coach Amber DeCoursey said she just tries to keep her team grounded by leading by example.
“We just tell the girls to approach each game the same,” DeCoursey said.
“We want to have the same mentality for each match. It’s difficult, but they also pick up from the coaches at the way we approach everything the same.”
The elite level of play that the fans have come to expect over the last 20 years hasn’t slowed one bit as Loogootee enters with a 16-3 record and Barr-Reeve stands at 20-2.
Despite another strong season, Lions head coach Lacey Wade said her team has faced numerous injuries, but is coming together at the right time. Libero Lauren Bowling is questionable for Friday’s match.
In addition Remington Wagler and Michala Beasley have been plagued by ankle injuries but will be on the court against Barr-Reeve.
“We have had many different lineup changes, but finally we have found a lineup that is suiting us,” Wade said. “Everybody is coming together nicely.”
Wade said she doesn’t think this game will show where the Lions are as a team, but more to see what they need to work on as the regular season comes to a close.
One thing she is sure of is that her girls will be focused from the beginning of the match that is expected to bring in more than one thousand fans at Jack Butcher Arena.
“Everyone looks forward to the match,” Wade said. “You don’t need to get the girls up, it’s a given that when this match rolls around they always come ready to play.”
At this late juncture of the season, DeCoursey knows her team is running out of opportunities to test themselves before the sectional, and the Loogootee match is the first of those tests before the season finale at home against Washington Oct. 11.
“We have several matches to see where we are at the end of September,” DeCoursey said.
“You like to see improvements or weaknesses and things you need to work on to be successful in the tournament.”
It’s that time of year again.
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