Platteview’s state volleyball tournament experience is somewhat limited, but coach Shae Speth has done her best to change that.

Speth guided the Trojans to a 23-8 mark and the school’s sixth tourney appearance in her second season at the helm. She previously coached several seasons in Oregon before she and her family moved east.

“Our whole team is pretty excited,” she said. “But we’ve talked about not being content just to be there.”

Speth’s journey to Nebraska has been an interesting one. Her family lost its Oregon home in a forest fire in 2015, which led to her eventual hiring at Platteview.

“My husband is from Springfield,” she said. “It was a tough go for us with the fire, but we’ve settled in here.”

Speth led Grant Union High School to an Oregon state title in 2017 and hopes to have similar success with the Trojans. The team has not made it out of the first round in five previous trips to state.

Platteview is led by senior Anna Koehler, who has 382 kills. Four other players — seniors Piper Hart, Halle Johnson and Aubrey Staudt and junior Jaedyn Parks — each have at least 120 kills.

Senior setter Rachel MacDonald has dished out 857 assists, and junior libero Kyra Gray has a team-high 333 digs.

The Trojans went 16-14 last season but went past that win total Oct. 10 in a three-set sweep of Raymond Central. Platteview lost in subdistricts against Class B No. 1 Omaha Skutt but still qualified for the district final.

In the team’s most important match of the season, Platteview responded with a three-set win over York to qualify for state.

“I thought we played to win every point,” Speth said. “We played with confidence, and that was a big key.”

The Trojans’ first-round opponent at state is Norris, the same team that Platteview opened the season against. The Titans have won the previous two matches between the squads this season.

“We’ve played them pretty close,” Speth said. “I’ve got a scrappy team that’s worked hard this year, so the girls have definitely earned their way to state.”

Class B matchups

Thursday at Pinnacle Bank Arena (South Court)

Omaha Skutt (31-5) vs. Hastings (21-11), 1:30 p.m.

The top-ranked SkyHawks are the top seed as they seek to nail down their fifth straight title, something accomplished by just four other teams. The Tigers are making their fifth trip to state and first since 2008.

Platteview (23-8) vs. Norris (26-9), 3:30

The Trojans made their most recent trip to state in 2016 and took a set off Gretna in a first-round loss. The Titans are making their 21st appearance at state in quest of their fourth state title, the most recent in 2014.

Waverly (28-3) vs. Grand Island Northwest (21-13), 5:30

The Vikings of coach Terri Neujahr have been ranked second in Class B most of the season and are seeking their first state title since 1974. The Vikings of coach Lindsey Harders have the longest current state tourney streak with 19 straight appearances.

Sidney (32-3) vs. Omaha Duchesne (21-17), 7:30

The Lady Raiders are making their 13th appearance at state and seek their fifth state title, the most recent coming in 1989. The Cardinals are making their fifth consecutive trip to state in Andrew Wehrli’s fifth season as head coach.

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Mike covers high school sports, primarily volleyball in the fall, girls basketball in the winter and baseball in the spring and summer. He also reports on horse racing for The World-Herald. Follow him on Twitter @MPattersonOWH. Phone: 402-444-1350.

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