BROOMFIELD — Holy Family volleyball coach Krista Solomon is educating herself on the RPI system just as much as practically everyone else these days, but there's only one satisfying answer for the Tigers at this point in the season.
After Tuesday's win over Mead in five difficult sets at the Holy Family gym, Solomon's Tigers earned what is likely a share of the Tri-Valley League title with Berthoud — as those two teams both finished 12-2 in league with a split against each other.
How the seeding committee handles a co-champion when it comes to hosting a regional ... that is what Solomon will be curious to find out.
"We knew we needed this, and we knew Mead was going to up for it, too," Solomon said after HFHS took a 22-25, 25-17, 25-22, 22-25, 15-9 victory to go to 19-4 overall. "We needed this for RPI and to stay in the contest for league (title).
"We're really not sure if CHSAA will make the league determine a champion or not. It's one of those things I need to read up on. I'm hopeful that it goes our way, but we'll see."
After a huge non-league win against Niwot helped bump the Tigers up to ninth in RPI (Niwot was still eighth on Tuesday morning), Holy Family backed it up by saving its best set against the Mavericks (12-7, 9-5 TVL) until last on senior night.
The Tigers had eight kills without a single hitting error in the shortened game to 15, and that attack was led by Julia Giltner and Rachel Siurek. Holy Family also had two aces and a block in closing out Mead — a team set in third place in league and a solid candidate for a top-16 finish in the RPI.
Volleyball regional seeding comes on Monday.
"Honestly, I just love playing with the team and I don't care about where we have to play, or league or any of that. I just think we've had a great season so far," said Holy Family's Ali Travis, who led the Tigers along with Giltner with 11 kills. "I love the mental side of the game, and playing teams like Niwot and Mead bring that challenge for sure.
"We came out with a lot of energy in the fifth set, and we needed that a lot against them."
In a rematch of a 3-1 Holy Family victory at MHS back on Sept. 27, both teams scratched and clawed each set out this time around. Mead, led by Sydney Blackburn's 14 kills, took the first set with help from several Holy Family hitting errors toward the end, but the Mavericks controlled the play in their Set 4 win by hammering down 18 kills.
The final set really came down to a five-point run from Holy Family in which Siurek tallied three kills on the right side. Mead also had seven kills in the final set but the Mavericks couldn't get any serious runs going.
"We missed a ton of serves where normally that is a strength, and you add that to some other unforced errors at some critical times and that's how you come up just short," said Mead coach Michael Dumler, whose team plays in a tournament at Golden High to close out the regular season. "Coming here and playing like we did, thought we played hard and we're set up well for hitting regionals.
"That Holy Family block is huge, and you just have to hand it to them."
Holy Family 3, Mead 2
At Holy Family HSMead (12-7, 9-5) 25 17 22 25 9 Holy Family (19-4, 12-2) 22 25 25 22 15
Kills — Mead: Sydney Blackburn 14, Macy Bourn 9, Kaylee Wilburn 9; Holy Family: Julia Giltner 11, Ali Travis 11, Rachel Siurek 7, Jody Gallagher 6.
Blocks — Mead: Wilburn 7, Blackburn 4, Abbey Glynn 3, Bailee Irwin 3; Holy Family: Giltner 12, Gallagher 9.
Assists — Mead: Delaney Overlin 25, Nicole Hamann 25; Holy Family: Sara Berghoff 33.
Aces — Mead: Blackburn 4, Bourn 3, Irwin 3; Holy Family: Peyton Frank 2, Sam Weber 2.
Digs — Mead: Bourn 29, Jaycee Docheff 25, Blackburn 25; Holy Family: Weber 34, Travis 24.