MHS spikers fall in sub-state title match

By Steve Sell
October 22, 2017

ULYSSES — McPherson High’s volleyball team survived one upset bid on Saturday, but it couldn’t overcome a second.

Class 4A Division I’s No. 2-ranked team will not be in the field of eight on Friday at Salina for the state tournament after being upset in straight sets in the finals by Ulysses, which is ranked No. 9 in the class.

The Tigers were 25-22, 25-20 winners as they were backed by a raucous home crowd.

The Bullpups had survived an emotional three-setter with arch-rival Buhler in the semifinals. After winning 25-15, the Bullpups lost the second set 19-25 and were in dire straits in the third, trailing 13-8. They stormed back, though, and pulled out a 25-21 win.

Cassie Cooks had 15 kills on the day to lead the Bullpups, with Andrea Sweat adding 13 and Elle Barrett notching 12.

Jaycee Burghart had 41 assists. Michaela Bowers (14), Bailea Crist (13) and Barrett (10) were dig leaders.

The Bullpups finished the year with a terrific 35-6 record. The loss in the finals, however, snapped one of the longest streaks in the state for a team qualifying for state as MHS had been the last seven years.

Making state were Rose Hill (36-3), Miege (10-26), Louisburg (30-9), Basehor-Linwood (24-14), Independence (35-4), El Dorado (20-19), Ulysses (29-8) and Wellington (19-16).