GLENS FALLS – Last season they snuck up on teams through the New York State Volleyball tournament. This year, everyone knows about the Lady Bobcats from Bainbridge-Guilford.
After losing one senior to graduation at the end of their state title run, fans and community members began saying Bainbridge-Guilford could easily turn around and do it again in 2018.
“No, it’s absolutely not in the bag for us this year,” said Bobcats’ head coach Tami Selfridge in a preseason interview. “If any of my kids begin to think they don’t have to work as hard in practice or challenge ourselves each and everyday at practices to return to the finals, I will not be happy as their coach.”
Teams that faced B-G knew what they were getting when they stepped on the court this season: a very fundamental, talented group that played like a team, not individuals.
While the Bobcats do have standouts throughout the roster, it is what each player does for the team that has made Bainbridge-Guilford nearly unstoppable the past two seasons.
“Playing as a group is what gave us a state championship [in 2017],” said Selfridge. “We had so many girls that had a really good day and we will need that to continue if we want to repeat this weekend.”
The goal for the Bobcats this season was not to win a title. It was to return back to the New York State Championships and defend their title.
“Now that we have won a state championship, putting that down as our goal feels small,” said Selfridge in the early season discussion.
The regular season has passed and the final weekend is here. The team has achieved part of their season goal, but capturing the title once again is their objective.
The Bobcats have gone undefeated in the regular season play and only dropped a few games during tournaments.
The Bobcats have been a force all season long as very few teams have kept a game close. Everything seems to be clicking in the eyes of Bainbridge-Guilford’s head coach––except serves. Anyone who knows or has played the sport of volleyball knows how crucial serving is.
“We struggled a little bit in Tioga last weekend against Bishop Grimes with our serving,” said Selfridge. “We missed five serves in the first set. We still won but if we are playing a team like the ones we will see this weekend, we can’t do that.”
Selfridge said the team scrimmaged Owego – the other Section IV team that will be competing for a championship in Glens Falls this weekend, and the serves still were where she would like them to be.
She had serving on her practice plans for Thursday’s final practice before heading out to the tournament but due to the weather, all after school activities at Bainbridge-Guilford were cancelled resulting in no practice at all. “I’m hoping we bring some serves with us to Glens Falls,” said the Bobcats coach.
Bainbridge-Guilford and the Panama Panthers of Section VI faced each other in last’s season’s pool play on the opening day of the championship tournament...