J-Hawk’s season ends fashionably late at State

Outlook staff writer
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Outlook staff writer


Since moving to Class B six years ago, Joliet volleyball hasn’t made it to State until now. The results weren’t what Coach Webber or the team had hoped for, but the experience was what they call “necessary,” in sports: A string of hard losses that precede even tougher wins. 

The J-Hawks played Florence in their first match, winning their first set.

“You know, they came out strong that first set with Florence and beat them and I really thought we had it,” said Webber. “I thought we were matched pretty well, just too many unforced errors.”

Florence won the next three sets and forced Joliet into a tough matchup with Choteau the next day. Getting behind Libby Zorn, Shayla Webber and Holly Nowak the J-Hawks rallied in four to beat the Bulldogs.

Webber seemed impressed, “I was really proud of how they played. Choteau is a good team and took Red Lodge to five sets the day before.”

With an hour and a half before facing off against Thompson Falls the girls didn’t have much time to rest.

“We started slow, but then picked it up in sets three and four,” said Webber. 

They lost the first two sets before winning the third. In the fourth set the score went to Thompson Falls, 31-29 in a very close match. The J-Hawks were out. 

“I am really proud of the girls,” said Webber. “They fought hard, they never gave up and they made a great showing for their first time at State. We had hoped to get in the top three—and they had the talent—but we came up short.”

The season came to an end for the Joliet girls, but a spark of hope for the 2017 season illuminated Coach Webber’s eyes.

“It has been an awesome season and I am excited for these young players to feed off of the success of this team and work hard to maybe get there again next year. We all felt very blessed for the opportunity.”

Red Lodge went on to beat Huntley Project for the State B championship. 


Florence def. Joliet

18-25, 25-19, 25-19, 25-17

Florence: Kills: 47 (Megan Kowalski 14). Assists: 42 (Shay Waldbillig 39). Aces: 16 (Hunter Doty-DiBritio 5, Kowalksi 4). Digs: 39 (Doty DiBritio 13). Blocks: 7 (Kowalksi 4). 

Joliet: Kills: 35 (Libby Zorn 14). Assists: 31 (Shayla Webber 27). Aces: 11 (Holly Nowak 5). Digs: 65 (Webber 21). Blocks: 7 (Zorn 2, Vanessa Nowak 2). 


Joliet def. Choteau

25-23, 25-20, 16-25, 25-19

Joliet: Kills: 41 (Libby Zorn 11, Holly Nowak 9, Caitlyne DeBeau 9). Assists: 38 (Shayla Webber 31). Aces: 9 (Zorn 5, Lacey Oliphant 2, Nowak 2). Digs: 97 (Webber 23, DeBeau 22, Danni Nardinger  12). Blocks: 7 (Nowak 2, DeBeau 1.5, Webber 1.5). 

Choteau: Kills: 39 (Megan Krone 12, Molly Salmond 10). Assists: 36 (Cassidy Krone 35). Aces: 11 (Salmond 3, Cassidy Krone 3). Digs: 67 (Cassidy Krone 13, Salmond 13, Megan Krone 12). Blocks: 18 (Kaitlin Bowers 5, Savanah Stern 4, Megan Krone 4). 


Thompson Falls def. Joliet

25-21, 25-17, 18-25, 31-29

Thompson Falls: Kills: 43 (Ember Schwindt 15, Sierra Sorlie 14, Madison Wheeler 12). Assists: 42 (Haley Wilson 41). Aces: 4 (four with one). Digs: 91 (Sorlie 23, Schwindt 18, Megan McKenzie 16). Blocks: 27 (Schwindt 11, Lexy VanElswyk 6, Wilson 5).

Joliet: Kills: 46 (Libby Zorn 16, Holly Nowak 10, Caitlyne DeBeau 10). Assists: 37 (Shayla Webber 24, Shalee Unger 9). Aces: 6 (Webber 2, Zorn 2). Digs: 109 (DeBeau 21, Webber 21, Danni Nardinger 19). Blocks: 4 (Nowak 2, DeBeau 1.5).

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