The 2021 NSAA state volleyball championships begin today as matches will be played in classes A, B, and C1. Tomorrow, Anselmo-Merna will compete in the Class D2 state tournament. It will mark Anselmo-Merna’s first appearance at the state tournament since 1972. 1972 marked the first year that the tournament took place. It was played at Nebraska Western College in Scottsbluff. That year, Anselmo-Merna defeated Potter in the first round but then lost to Lebanon Beaver Valley in the state semifinals. The NSAA will celebrate the 50th anniversary of the state volleyball tournament this year and it will once again include Anselmo-Merna. The Lady Coyotes qualified for the tournament by winning the Class D2-8 district championship on Saturday winning over Garden County in straight sets. After the match, AM senior Jaide Chandler visited with KCNI/KBBN sports about the adversity that this year’s team overcame to fulfill their dream of making it to state.
Junior Shaylyn Safranek talked about what it will take for Anselmo-Merna to be successful at the state tournament.
Anselmo-Merna enters the tournament at 24-8 and will face Humphrey St. Francis in the opening round. St. Francis will be making their 25th appearance at the state tournament and are 23-5 on the season. Thursday’s match is scheduled for 9 a.m. and will be broadcast on KBBN 95.3 FM and kbbn.com.
Other opening round matches in Class D2 on Thursday will feature, Falls City Sacred Heart vs Exeter Milligan, Stuart vs Wynot, and Maywood Hayes Center vs Diller-Odell.