Ember Canty (left) goes up against Taylor Motz (middle) and Emma Gilmore (right) in Centauri's 3-2 victory over Alamosa on October 10th. Canty is an integral part of the Falcon team leading in kills and blocks. (Courier photo by Stephen Jiron)
ALAMOSA— Centauri went 1-1 in regional pool play as the 35th seed last year, which wasn’t good enough to advance to State pool play. The Falcon’s loss that kept them from advancing came at the hands of Valley High School who went on to challenge the eventual state champions Eaton High School in the finals.
This year the Falcons shattered all expectations going a perfect 23-0 en route to a number 6 seed in 3A volleyball. That schedule included a 10-0 sweep of the very competitive IML, which sent 4 teams including Centauri to the post season- Bayfield, Pagosa Springs and Alamosa.
Offensively, Centauri is led by Ember Canty. At 6’2” Canty is a terror at the net leading the Falcons in blocks and kills. Behind Canty Caroline Van Berkum is second in both stats.
This weekend Centauri will be hosting their Regional pool with two teams in attendance- Platte Valley and St. Mary’s. Platte Valley shares a little history with Centauri as Valley High School had a hand in the end of their season as well. Last year Platte Valley went to state and was assigned the same pool as Valley and Middle Park where Platte Valley was promptly swept at 0-2 and sent home. This year the Broncos eeked into the post season with an 11-12 record. The Broncos reside in what may be the toughest league that 3A volleyball has to offer, the Patriot League.
Based in the Fort Collins/Loveland area last year the Patriot league comprised half of the state pool tournament with 6 teams, three quarters of the semi finals and swept the state finals. This year four teams from the Patriot region are seeded high enough to host pools in the regional round while three others are in attendance.
St. Mary’s is a catholic school based in Colorado Springs. St Mary’s is another team with plenty of post-season experience. Last year they went to regionals and the year before to state. They are 5 years removed from their deepest run, to the semi finals. In the semi finals they were victimized by none other than Valley High School, who went on to win it all. St. Mary’s fielded a .500 season this year. They funnel their offense through sophomore Seneca Hackley who leads the team with 120 kills. Centauri plays host to both teams Friday Nov. 3 afternoon at 3 p.m.