MEEKER | Meeker’s varsity volleyball team will enter the 2016 district volleyball tournament as the No. 2 seed after splitting its final two matches of the season, losing its Homecoming match to Paonia but beating the Panthers in an exciting match in Rangely last Saturday. Meeker will start pool-play Friday at noon, at Grand Valley High School. Pool-play winners will advance to Saturday’s round, which will determine seeding for the state-qualifying regional tournament the following week. The lady Cowboys split their final two matches of the regular season, including a homecoming to the Paonia Eagles, currently ranked second in the state in 2A, before beating the Panthers in the final match of the regular season, in Rangely. “We knew Paonia was going to be a hard game,” Meeker head coach Janae Stanworth said of the homecoming competition. “We just couldn’t find a groove.” Meeker lost the match in three games 25-15/25-15 and 25-18. Meeker sophomore twins Kassie and Krissie Luce led Meeker in kills against Paonia, with five and four, respectively. Meeker junior Avery Watt served for 12 points, while senior Peyton Burke and sophomore Lila Klinglesmith both served for 10. Meeker did not have much time to dwell on the loss, as they would travel to Rangely the following day to play the Panthers, who beat the Cowboys in Meeker last month. “Halle Ahrens and Reese Pertile did a great job blocking,” coach Stanworth said of the senior’s efforts against their Rio Blanco County rivals. “Krissie, Kassie and Peyton led our defense. We didn’t let much hit the floor.” The match went back and forth with Rangely winning the first set 25-21 then Meeker won the second 25-16. Rangely won game three 25-13 but Meeker won a close game (25-22) in the fourth, then won the match with a 15-5 victory in the fifth and final game. “We had 95 percent serving, which really helped us,” coach Stanworth said. Burke and Kassie Luce each had 22 serves for points, senior Maggie Phelan had 19 and Krissie Luce had 12. Pertile had 11 kills against Rangely, while Ahrens and Krissie Luce each had six. Ahrens and Pertile each had seven blocks, while everyone on the roster had at least one dig on defense. Hayden and Caprock will play a pig-tail match Tuesday, with the winner playing Meeker in the first round of pool-play at noon. Meeker will play Vail Christian at 3 p.m., Friday. Only the winners of each pool will advance to the regional tournament. “We have tough games ahead of us and we will need to be 100 percent prepared,” coach Stanworth said.