Posted On: 09/18/20 10:00 AM

No spectators but the show must go on! The 46th Annual Winnetonka Volleyball Invitational is set to run Saturday morning. It has survived and will consist of 10 teams now instead of 12 from across the state. Fort Osage and Liberty North have both dropped from the tournament. The competing Lee’s Summit West Mo-Kan tournament has been canceled, making this tournament the local action for the weekend. We have not seen the new schedule but the original format was three pools of four followed by championship and consolation bracket play.

Who: Central (St. Joseph), Columbia Hickman, Grain Valley,  North Kansas City, Park Hill, Platte County, Raymore-Peculiar, St. Michael’s, Truman, Winnetonka

Original Pool Play below.

Pool 1: Park Hill, St. Michael’s, Winnetonka, Truman

Pool 2: Liberty North, Hickman, Fort Osage, Central

Pool 3: Platte County, North Kansas City, Raymore-Peculiar, Grain Valley


Pool1: On paper, Park Hill should win this pool but may be challenged by St. Michael’s, who have enjoyed success at the state championships over the years. Park Hill has the pieces but in their eyes may be disappointed in their 3-3 start. Emily Pella has emerged as the team’s best setter and she has options in Kristen BirminghamKristenBirmingham6'1" | OHPark Hill | 2021StateMO, Hannah Graves, and Shaye Koski. Megan HooverMeganHooverOHPark Hill | 2021MO has been steady in the back row as the team leader in digs. St. Michael’s is off to 1-2 start but has played strong competition in Pleasant Hill and Harrisonville. They are led by all-state performer Calista Bokenkroger.  Host team Winnetonka opened the year in solid fashion at the Van Horn tournament. They are off to a promising start and this tournament can help continue the confidence.  They returned many varsity starters from a season ago in Juliana Luperico, Dorianna Braxton, and Nyah Cunningham.    Pool 2:  Liberty North is off to a fast start to begin the year behind the play of juniors Isabel ZimmermanIsabelZimmerman6'2" | RSLiberty North | 2022StateMO and Addison BeagleAddisonBeagle5'9" | SLiberty North | 2022StateMO. The two have connected thus far for 72 kills. Freshman Carlie Cisneros has emerged as a second scoring threat for the Eagles. However, North is a late scratch from the tournament and won’t be in action this weekend. Hickman is off to a strong beginning, holding a 6-2-1 record at the time of this article. Fort Osage is also a late scratch so look for these pools to adjust. Central is another school we don’t quite have a grasp on as they only have one score updated in Maxpreps. They have a four-set loss to Chrisman this week listed. On paper, they have an experienced roster this fall filled with seniors and juniors.     Pool 3: Platte County finally has all of its missing pieces back and will contend for a championship. After playing in the Lansing tournament last weekend, the on-court time will undoubtedly help get the team back in sync after playing their first three matches without three starters. In their absence, Emerson Walter has stepped up in the setter position. Look for Bryn McGeheBrynMcGehe5'8" | DSPlatte County | 2021StateMO and Kate BrownKateBrown5'11" | MBPlatte County | 2022StateMO to lead the offense this weekend and for Platte County to win their pool. North Kansas City isn’t off to the start we expected. They returned many starters to a team that won over 20 matches a year ago. Calissa MinateeCalissaMinatee6'0" | MBNorth Kansas City | 2023StateMO hit over .500 last year and will look to work back up to that percentage this weekend. Chloe Reese will also be a player to keep an eye on for the Hornets. Ray-Pec has gotten out the gate slowly. They have received solid play from Kierra Hipple, with 42 kills to start the year. There isn’t much information out on Grain Valley as their stats and records are not updated. They did secure a five-set win over Oak Park on 9/15.  Pool Update: Pool 1: Central, Grain Valley, Winnetonka, Park Hill, Hickman Pool 2: North Kansas City, Platte County, Raymore-Peculiar, St. Michael’s, Truman Prediction: Originally we had Liberty North taking down Park Hill for the second time in two weeks. With North dropping out we will now take Park Hill defeating Platte County for the championship. 

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