"We're young, we're inexperienced, but we've won some games already we probably shouldn't have or people didn't expect us to win," Cole said. "They work hard, they're young, they're scrappy - we're just kind of going day by day right now."
Wirt County missed its first state tournament since 2003 last season and isn't expected to be down long, and Charleston Catholic followed back-to-back state titles in 2009 and 2010 with another tournament appearance in 2011 before missing last season.
Needless to say, the top is crowded with contenders in Class A.
That fact makes the Showcase a highly anticipated event for volleyball coaches as teams get a chance to look at and even play contenders in different classes from different parts of the state.
"I like coming here because we usually play teams we don't see other times," Cole said. "We play Tyler, we play Ritchie [County], so it's kind of nice to watch them play, but then play teams we might not normally get to see.
"And then just in case we make it at the end, we've been here. Obviously that would be huge for us with such a young group."
Null uses this week's stage to test his squad.
"When we're all healthy we [have a chance]," Null said. "We requested Tyler, we knew they were going to have a good program and we saw it as a good opportunity. We generally try to play a AA or AAA team while we're up here too, so playing Roane [County] out of the [Little Kanawha Conference], all of those LKC teams are usually pretty good so that's helpful."
Reach Ryan Pritt at 304-348-7948, ryan.pr...@wvgazette.com, or follow him at twitter.com/RPritt.