I spoke with coach Matt Chang today about the challenges his Bishop Blanchet volleyball team faces in the 64-team Spokane Classic this weekend.
“It will be fun for us to see how we stack up,” he said.
The tournament includes many of the state’s top teams as well as some competitive squads from Idaho, including Sandpoint. The field features seven teams ranked in The Seattle Times’ 4A top-10 — No. 1 Mead of Spokane, No. 3 Graham-Kapowsin, No. 5 Skyview of Vancouver, No. 6 Auburn Riverside, No. 7 Kamiakin of Kennewick, No. 8 Richland and No. 9 Lewis and Clark of Spokane.
The 3A ranked teams competing, in addition to No. 1 Blanchet, are No. 3 Mount Spokane, No. 5 Camas and No. 7 Prairie.
Blanchet passed another big test last night with a 3-1 Metro League victory at No. 4 Seattle Prep. That’s two straight over Prep this season and the rematch with second-ranked Eastside Catholic comes Monday. The Braves won 3-0 the first time around, but the games were pretty close.
Camas and Prairie play tonight. Camas is coming off a 3-0 loss to Columbia River on Tuesday and is in Blanchet’s pool in this weekend’s tournament along with Pasco and Freeman.
For complete information on the Crossover pools, you can go to this link.
Note that the pools were revised earlier this week when Bethel and Hanford withdrew. Originally, Mead and Richland were in the same pool. Now, they’re not.
We should find out more about Mount Spokne in this tourney. The Wildcats are in a pool with Eisenhower of Yakima, St. George’s and King’s rated No. 1 in Class A in the State Volley Coaches’ Association rankings.
Auburn Riverside and Pairie are in the same pool, too.
Only the pool winners have a chance to go on and win the tournament title. If the Braves take their pool, they could well play Skyview in the first round of bracket play — that’s a team they lost to at the Kent Classic last month.
We are expecting a story on the tournament for Sunday’s paper and I will have some followup here on Monday, along with new rankings.
If you happen to be there, please share your impressions.