Oconto Falls dropped pool play matches Saturday to the eventual first- and second-place finishers before winning two matches in the afternoon to secure fifth place at an eight-team tournament in Shawano.
The Panthers went to 2-1 in pool play, falling to eventual champion Kewaunee and runner-up Wausau West, and defeating North Eastern Conference foe Clintonville.
In the afternoon session, Oconto Falls defeated Oconto, 25-18, 25-18, and then Peshtigo, 25-22, 25-18, to place fifth.
“We didn’t make unforced errors,” head coach Rochell Otto said of her team’s successes. “That’s what we struggle with too. You know, one bad hit in the net, and then we hit a ball out of bounds, we shank a serve. It snowballs.”
In the losses, the Panthers kept the games close, scoring at least 19 points in each of the sets.
“As soon as we can start passing more consistently, we will begin to win those games instead of coming up on the short end,” Otto said.