When Parkview Baptist volleyball coach Becky Madden refers to the Louisiana High School Athletic Association’s State Volleyball Tournament as “the end of the line,” the reference is strictly metaphorical.
Fourth-seeded Parkview (29-8) is part of a six-team Baton Rouge metro contingent set for quarterfinal play Thursday at Kenner’s Pontchartrain Center.
The Eagles, Broadmoor, St. Amant, St. John-Plaquemine, St. Joseph’s Academy and University don’t want Thursday to be the end of the line. All six teams are hoping to make it beyond the quarterfinals to Friday’s semifinals and then, perhaps, to the finals Saturday.
“This is the end of the line as in the end of the season,” Madden said. “None of us want it to be over yet. There are some tough matchups, and everybody knows it’s one-and-done if you’re not ready to play.
“We’re confident in what we can do. I think you have some possibilities in our bracket. You have to play well.”
Three metro teams play at 11:45 a.m. No. 9 Broadmoor (31-12) meets top-seeded St. Thomas More in Division II-Class 4A, while third-seeded U-High (29-8) takes on No. 6 St. Thomas Aquinas-Hammond in Division IV-2A. In Division V-Classes 1A and below, No. 7 St. John (28-12) meets traditional power Episcopal School of Acadiana, seeded second.
PBS plays No. 4 E.D. White Catholic at 5 p.m. The area’s two Division I-Class 5A teams play at 6:45 p.m. Fourth-seeded St. Amant (34-5) takes on No. 5 Dominican-New Orleans, while St. Joseph’s (31-10), seeded sixth, faces No. 3 Destrehan.
“At this point in the year most of the coaching is done, except for substitutions and calling timeouts,” St. Amant coach Allison Leake said. “It’s up to the players now. A four vs. five matchup like we have is pretty even. Most of our players were there last year, so they know what to expect.”
The expectations are decidedly different for Broadmoor, which returns just one starter, Bre’Ona Taylor, from a team that made last year’s tourney.
“We know we’re the underdogs,” Broadmoor coach Maria Gonzalez said. “The key will be our defense because we don’t have a lot of height.
“This is a great opportunity. With so many new players, I didn’t know if we’d win 10 games, and we’ve won 30. They have a lot of heart.”
For UHS it’s a chance to avenge a quarterfinal loss to STA last season.
“We’re playing well right now, and I think they (UHS players) feel like they have something to prove,” UHS coach Bonita Johnson said.
The expectations are also different for SJA, which returns to the tourney after a one-year absence. The Redstickers have a regular-season tournament win over Destrehan.
“This is a young group that wants to do well,” SJA coach Sivi Miller said. “Not being at the Pontchartrain Center last year was a sour taste for them, and it’s motivated them. We’ve played in a lot of big tournaments, but this will be the first state tournament for most of this team. Destrehan is a solid team, and I’m sure they’ll be ready, too.”
Pairings for the Louisiana High School Athletic Association’s state volleyball tournament, which starts Thursday at the Pontchartrain Center in Kenner.
Division I-Class 5A
Fontainebleau vs. Chapelle, 8:30 p.m., (Court 1)
Dominican vs. St. Amant, 6:45 p.m., (Court 1)
Destrehan vs. St. Joseph’s, 6:45 p.m., (Court 3)
Terrebonne vs. Mt. Carmel, 8:30 p.m., (Ct. 3)
Both at 3:15 p.m.
Division II-Class 4A
St. Thomas More vs. Broadmoor, 11:45 a.m., (Court 2)
Assumption vs. O.P. Walker, 3:15 p.m., (Court 2)
St. Martinville vs. St. Scholastica, 1:30 p.m. (Court 1)
Belle Chase vs. Cabrini, 6:45 p.m., (Court 2)
11:45 a.m. and 3:15 p.m.
Division III-Class 3A
Ursuline vs. Lakeshore, 8:30 p.m., (Court 2)
E.D. White vs. Parkview, 5 p.m., (Court 2)
St. Louis vs. Teurlings, 1:30 p.m., (Court 3)
Ben Franklin vs. Vandebilt, 5 p.m., (Court 3)
Both at 1:30 p.m.
Division IV-Class 2A
Notre Dame vs. Northlake Christian, 1:30 p.m. (Court 2)
Catholic-NI vs. Newman, 3:15 p.m. (Court 1)
University vs. St. Thomas Aquinas, 11:45 a.m. (Court 3)
John Curtis vs. De La Salle, 5 p.m. (Court 1)
11:45 a.m. and 1:30 p.m.
Division V-Classes 1A, B, C
Country Day vs. Ascension Episcopal, TBA
Houma Christian vs. Westminster Christian, 10 a.m. (Court 3)
Cent.l Catholic vs. Hannan, 10 a.m. (Court 1)
St. John vs. Episcopal of Acadiana, 11:45 a.m. (Court 1)
Both at 10 a.m.