State volleyball tournaments are returning to South Sound.
The Washington Interscholastic Activities Association decided at its executive board meeting Monday to move the Class 4A, 3A and 2A state volleyball tournaments to Saint Martin’s University and The Evergreen State College starting this fall. It’s the first time since 2001 Saint Martin’s will host a state volleyball tournament, while it’s a first for Evergreen.
The 4A and 3A tournaments will be at Saint Martin’s Nov. 11-12, while the 2A tournament will be at Evergreen. Saint Martin’s also hosted the Class 3A tournament from 1998-2001, as well as the 2A tournament in ’97, when Black Hills placed fifth for the school’s first state trophy.
In ’98, Olympia defeated Selah, 8-15, 15-12, 15-12, for the 3A title. The following year, Olympia became a 4A school and traveled to Spokane for the state event.
“I’m happy and enthusiastic about the opportunity to have the event back on the Westside, where many of the 3A and 4A teams are from,” Olympia coach Laurie Creighton said. “Hopefully, it will improve our fan support.”
The Toyota Center in Kennewick had been home for the 4A, 3A and 2A state tournaments since 2007, hosting 48 teams each year over a three-day period on four courts.
Marcus Pavilion at Saint Martin’s is able to hold three courts for two classifications, so the WIAA needed a second venue. The best and closest option was Evergreen, which can hold two courts for 2A.
The 1A, 2B and 1B state tournaments will continue to be held at the Yakima SunDome on Nov. 11-12.
In addition to the change of venue, another possible change is the format of the tournament. In years past, pairings in the winners’ bracket and consolation bracket were all best-of-five matches. A proposed change would make consolation matches best-of-three, while the winners’ bracket matches would remain best-of-five. That proposal had been approved in two previous executive board meetings, and a final decision will be made in March.
In December, the WIAA voted to move the Class 3A state fastpitch tournament to the Regional Athletic Complex, giving Lacey two state tournaments for 2011.
Meg Wochnick: 360-754-5473 email@example.com