The Garden City Buffaloes are Western Athletic Conference volleyball tournament champions.
The Buffs won the WAC Saturday at Dodge City High School, sweeping each of the four other conference teams, the last being the Dodge City Red Demons, a match the Buffs dominated by set scores of 25-7, 25-10.
Great Bend finished in second, Liberal third, Hays fourth and host Dodge City fifth.
The Buffs are now 26-9 and in good position to host a sub-state tournament.
Their tightest match ended up being their first of the day, against the Great Bend Panthers, a match the Buffaloes won by scores 25-17, 25-21.
“I thought our first match against Great Bend we played a little tight, a little anxious, but that’s to be expected, especially with just the history of this tournament,” Garden City head coach Trista Bailey said. “Once we kind of settled in, (the players) rolled through it and we got a lot great plays from a lot of different people, which is encouraging to see.”
It was a well-rounded effort from the Buffs, but some of the key players in the tournament were senior Taylor Terpstra, junior Reagan Karlin and sophomore Julie Calzonetti.
Karlin had 29 kills, Terpstra had 22 and Calzonetti 23.
“It’s great that we have that balance,” Bailey said. “Taylor Terpstra, she’s the only senior that we have, and so I’m just really happy for her that she’s kind of finding her groove over there on the right side. She was our constant all day.
"Everybody knows what we have on the outside in Reagan and Julie, but she’s kind of just our calm, quiet, steady voice we can count on over there, so I’m really happy for her.”
Bailey said team has struggled a little bit this season with its consistency and its confidence just because it is so loaded with youth. Recently, however, that has started to change, she said.
“Last weekend when we were in McPherson, there was just kind of a spark that clicked with them,” Bailey said. “I’m glad to see us just rolling with that momentum, and proud of the way that they played today and we’re excited for next weekend."
After Great Bend, Garden City beat Hays 25-13, 25-14, then beat Liberal 25-15, 25-18 before finishing off with Dodge City.