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Sports is sometimes more about
other things than just winning

Seeley Swan Varsity Volleyball Girls from Left to Right:
Front row: Sarina Morris, Kristen Owens, Christina Pulici, Wendy Lewis and Adrianne Evans. Back Row: Varsity Coach Randy Stobb, Samantha Lewis, Shannon O'Brien, Jenna Kyle, Val Niles, Marlee Brown and Laura Parker. Not pictured Jane Eustance.

Seeley Swan Junior Varsity and "C" Squad Volleyball Girls from Left to Right:
Front row: Aubrey Renitz (C), Autumn Biggins (JV), Stacie Morris (C), Ashlea Wolf-Sherman (C), Danielle Drew (C), Christina Pulici (JV), Tiara Hatten (C), and Lindsay Evans (JV). Back Row: Junior Varsity Coach Kevin Stroh, Blair Barthelmess (C), Abbie Christianson (C), Desire Nemmers (C), Val Niles (JV), Mary Yiengst (JV), Beth Copenhaver (JV), Tessa Hatten (JV), Jessie Diamond (C), Sarina Morris (JV), Kristen Owens (JV). Not pictured "C" Squad Coach Susan Ownes.

Story & photos
by Patricia Swan Smith

For the Pathfinder
February 24, 2000
Seeley Swan Pathfinder
Seeley Lake, Montana

The volleyball girls from Seeley Swan High School have endured loss after loss for the past three years with only a few wins; but those girls continue to play hard and hold their heads up high. The varsity team had their first win last weekend in Eureka.

In Eureka, Varsity Coach Randy Stobb said that the girls did a great job and he was very proud of them.

"They won the first, third and fourth games, and they were behind in the first and third," he said. "In the first game they were down 9-3 and came back with a final score 15-13. In the third game they were down 8-2 and won 15-8. The fourth game was 15-10. They played really well.

"It's been a tough season. They started out working really hard and unfortunately couldn't get that first win. Since we weren't winning their confidence started dropping. But they continued to work hard and eventually got that first win, and hopefully that will give us some momentum going into the tournaments."

Win or lose, these girls have definitely worked hard all season. They practice from 1:45 to 4 p.m., five days a week unless they have games. Sometimes they played three games a week.

The varsity team will go into this weekend's games at 1-14.

The past two years were not easy years either1998-99, 2-13; and 1997-98, 1-14.

"We worked hard and played hard, but we just needed better serves to score the points. I think we'll do well at districts. I think we worked out the bugs," Senior Wendy Lewis said.

Junior Adrianne Evans said, "We had tons of new people so we had to work real hard to get adjusted to each other. We worked really hard, and I think we'll do really well at Districts."

Junior Laura Parker said, "It's not if you win or lose, it's how you play," she said. "You just have to try as hard as you can; it does get kind of depressing, but once you win it does make it all worth it.

"For the most part I've had fun, but it's been a rough three years, and hopefully it will get better," she said.

Junior Varsity will go into the weekend games at 0-15.

"It was a long, tough season," said JV Coach Kevin Stroh. "But the girls played hard and had a lot of fun."

Freshman Lindsay Evans, Junior Varsity, said "It was all right, a lot of losing. It frustrates us, but it doesn't really bother me much. We just keep trying." Lindsay will also be part of the varsity team in Districts.

The "C" Squad faired better than the Varsity and JV. They stand at 7-10.

"They worked hard, and I'm proud of all of them. Lots of team spirit. I try to instill the love of the game and not so much win, win, win. There are some key players up and coming," "C" Squad Coach Susan Owens said.

While it's been tough for the coaches and the players, the parents are proud of the way the girls have continued to play hard and not give up.

"I've been really concerned, and I hope they know that not giving up after all those losses has been more of a winning thing," said parent Bev Evans. "Walking out there and holding their heads up really high and playing hard every game hasn't been easy. That's a hard thing to have to do, and it's a hard lesson they've had to endure. I think they have been fantastic. It's not easy to do week after week, and they really deserve some recognition for their spirit." Bev is the mother of players Adrianne and Lindsay Evans.

Cindy Lewis said, "It's been a real struggle to keep their mind-set up and going. They've worked hard, and they deserve a real pat on the back for going on. They do play well, and it's a shame they didn't score more points. Still we are proud of them and all their efforts. Cindy is the mother of varsity player Wendy Lewis.

The gals have their last home games in Seeley this weekend. They will play Loyola starting at 10 a.m.

Frenchtown will host Districts starting March 2nd. Seeley varsity will play at 1:30 p.m. Depending on whether they win or lose, they will either play later that evening or the following day.

Six teams will play in the double elimination tournament, and four teams will go on to Divisions the following weekend in Superior. The top two teams from Divisions will go to State in Cutbank March 17th.

They're good players, and they still have a chance!

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